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Wedding Wednesday: a legal rant

I am a little bit cross. I have been kind of preoccupied in a happy way about the wedding (no surprise!) but my attention has been drawn to something that has really wound me up.

Over half term,┬áboth a friend and my sister have mentioned to me that we need to re-register Zach’s birth.
Why?
Because due to an out of date ridiculous law (the 1976 Legitimacy Law), it is a legal requirement that we re-write the truth.
That’s right: we have to LIE.
A legal document that lies!
We HAVE to re-register so that Zach becomes a ‘child of the marriage’ or we face a fine. Well, he isn’t a child of our marriage, he is part of our relationship, an integral part of our family history.

I can see the benefit to legitimising children in the past – you know, 200 years ago when property was precious – but surely in the twenty first century the stigma of illiegitimacy no longer exists. I can’t believe the law hasn’t been updated to reflect the changing social climate.
As well as the blatant lie, I’m annoyed at the expense of paying for a new certificate as well as the effort of having to organise an appointment and attend it.
The form annoys me. Although to be fair I was irritated by the original birth certificate too as it lists the father first. Again showing that the legal system still values men more than women. I think the least a mum deserves after the effort of having a baby is the first mention on the birth certificate?!
The form to re-register still gives the father’s details first and then ask for the mother’s starting with SURNAME NOW. Well, I’m not changing my name so it will be exactly the same as it was on the perfectly good original document. Completely pointless. Then I have to sign to declare that Chris is Zach’s father. I find this a bit demeaning.
As far as I’m concerned, the whole process is archaic and slightly offensive.

I love all three of my children equally. I don’t love Zach more because he is the result of a happy relationship. I don’t love Matthew and Anya more because I had to be both parents to them for so many years. If we have another child, I won’t love it more because it was born in wedlock.
Sorry for my little rant today! Back to happy thoughts about the wedding…

 


16 comments

  1. wow that really is such an oddity in this day and age! I dont recall my brother having to do this when he married his kids mum, but maybe it just wasnt mentioned? It really does seem pointless, as you say; you’re not changing your name!!
    Thanks for sharing this with us at #TriumphantTales. I hope to see you back next week!

  2. Fiona jk42

    You are right that the system is archaic and offensive. A lot of the law dates back to when men would “sow their wild oats” and never have to worry about supporting any children they fathered out of wedlock, and certainly would not have worried about those children having claim on any inheritance. Unfortunately, with the law in its current form you have no option but to go along with it if you want the best for your children.

  3. so if my daughter married after 4 of her children were born she has to re register them? Never knew about this, my daughter was born in 79 and we got married 6 months later and I have never re registered her……

  4. I literally can’t believe this. Red tape can be so ridiculous!!!!!!! I literally have no other words. What a farce! You should start up a petition against this. Thanks for linking up to #coolmumclub with this important bit of information. xx

  5. It does seem a silly given they have the same father and mother they did previously.

    I don’t think the order on the form really matters though. Someone needs to go first – yes it makes sense for it to be the mum considering that has to be the consistent thing if the child isn’t adopted or from a surrogate. But Dad or Father alphabetically comes first so just think about it like that if it’s offensive.

  6. I had to re read this again just to check I wasn’t reading it wrong. Are you serious? How silly is this, especially in this day and age. It does seem absolutely pointless and a waste of everyone’s time. Would anyone answer to why it was necessary? Thanks for sharing with the #DreamTeam x

  7. We had to re-register Reuben and it seemed crazy. The registrar didn’t really seem to see the point either. I know people that didn’t bother and they haven’t been fined. It is very out of date for this day in age. Thanks for joining #Blogstravaganza

  8. Totally get you on this but it’s really important you do it otherwise, if the worst were to happen, your ‘legitimate’ children would inherit over your ‘illegitimate’ child – wrong on so many levels but the law sucks! #coolmumclub

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