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Registering a birth in Hungary

Hello everyone,

Have you had to or are you going to register a birth in Hungary? What was the experience like?

Who is required to register the birth, and where? Can it be either the mother or father?

What documents are usually required in Hungary?

How long does the process to register a birth take? Are there any time limits in which the registration must be completed?

Did you register the birth with your home country and how did that process compare? Will your child be able to have dual nationality?

Thank you for sharing your experience.

Priscilla

I just recently submitted paperwork to register my own birth (over 50 years ago!) in Canada with Hungary, as part of application to obtain my HU citizenship verified (by way of my HU father). There is a form to fill out, and of course, you will need to submit the long form version of the birth certificate which (if not issued in English in the US or Canada) may have to be translated. Always best to check with the local HU consulate. They tend to be pretty helpful. At least, that's what I've found to be the case here in L.A.

When the child is born in HU, the hospital automatically informs the local registration office. They issue the birth certificate and the address card. It's closely linked. You also have to provide your details. 

If you are persistent you can go to the registration authorities directly after the birth and pick up the paperwork - they don't want to really work too hard so you have to perhaps argue for rapid service. 

Be aware you need to have your child's name (two choices: boy or girl) ready in the hospital BEFORE the birth as it's named there and then. This is entered into the hospital IT system.     

It's not the same as other countries where you can think about the name a bit.  When you get a birth certificate, it's in Hungarian, English and French, A4 and very "standardised" so you can use it in most countries. 

You might also need a consular birth certificate - these registers are sent to the home country for official lodgement.

I am not sure what applies to foreigners, but generally, not any kind of name is accepted. There is a list of names which are "approved", so that stupid parents dont give stupid name to the child. So long as you dont want to use "Airwrecka" instead of Erika, I think most of the names are ok.

http://weknowmemes.com/wp-content/uploa … wrecka.jpg

New names do get on the list, if enough people ask for it (and it isnt utterly ridiculous). For example, last year "Ariel" was approved for boys(???), and Tűzvirág (fireflower) for girls, but "Balaton" or "Főni" (short for főnök - boss) was not.

You can check the list here:
http://www.nytud.mta.hu/oszt/nyelvmuvel … index.html

Rawlee :

I am not sure what applies to foreigners, but generally, not any kind of name is accepted. ...

There used to be rules about names but not so sure now.

My HU daughter has a totally un-Hungarian name. Didn't have any questions about it when she was born other than people not getting the pronunciation correctly. 

My HU son on the other hand has a very acceptable name both for HU and the UK.  Interesting the spelling is slightly different in his HU passport than his British one.  The HU one has accents on it not used in the UK.

This only applies when both parents are Hungarian - im British, my wife is Hungarian, and registering our daughter was very different to this .....
As a non-HU Citizen, we did not have to choose one of the 'approved' names that would otherwise be the case - Katie has an english name - so, the Hospital did NOT register her on their walk around .... we HAD to go to the relevant office , here in Vas County, in Szombathely - it took about 1/2 an hour all told, the staff were very helpful & it was very straightforward - as we have regularly found here, we get very good feedback & service from the Authorities here in Hungary.
One of many reasons we are staying forever 😁

New to Budapest from the USA with my Hungarian wife and with no children planned, I'd like to know when is it mandatory to acquire a Hungarian Drivers License and how and where do you go to obtain one.
Is a road test and/or a written test required?
Can anyone advice?

Mailman1942 :

I'd like to know when is it mandatory to acquire a Hungarian Drivers License and how and where do you go to obtain one.
Is a road test and/or a written test required?
Can anyone advice?

This question is better in the Cars and Transportation section.

Short answers: Your US driving license is good for only one year (this is stated at the US Citizen Services section of the US Embassy web site which provides further information). You have to take a written test (the test is not easy), and might need a a road test.

Ok, where is the motor vehicle office or whatever it's called in Budapest? How can I get a more accurate answer rather than a maybe?

Angolhapsi :

.....As a non-HU Citizen, we did not have to choose one of the 'approved' names that would otherwise be the case - Katie has an english name - so, the Hospital did NOT register her on their walk around .... we HAD to go to the relevant office , here in Vas County, in Szombathely ...

Was that recently?

My experience was over 10 years ago.  I am wondering if it varies per county or the procedure is different now.

The question does not make clear whether the baby was born in Hungary to foreign parents, or born outside of Hungary but the parents would like to register it also in Hungary. Therefore I can only give tentative advice based on my experience generally on registering other stuff with Hungarian authorities as a British citizen living in Hungary to a Hungarian wife (8 years married, 4  years in England and 4 afterwards in Hungary where we both now reside.)

1. I have not registered a birth, because my wife takes precautions against our having sex, chiefly by flying out of the country on a Monday morning, being back late on a Friday night, and being too knackered on a weekend (I suggested to lie back and think of England, but usually on weekends she is sick of England, Portugal, Spain, Belgium, etc...)

2. But I have got residence card, health card, marriage certificate, and so on; so my general advice may be good but not specific.

3. We were married in England and got it translated and registered I forget which office because one office will tell you it is in another office and so forth. Do not be put off. Expect this. Have all the paperwork necessary and ready to tell them that the other office already told you that. (They probably have.) Be polite but persistent. Most Hungarian officials really just want to do the least they can get away with, and once you make it clear that  you are not going away untli something is done, they will be resigned to the fact of doing it.  Bring every bit of paperwork you have, in Hungarian and English. Hungarian officials of the government or bank or whatever love paperwork.  We just signed on a new house and I had to sign nine times to say I have looked at this house. Not bought it, not agreed to buy it, that I have looked at it.

4. In any official transaction be polite but firm. Make sure you have copies of everything.

5. Be patient.

6. Turn up early; ten to twenty minutes before the registrar opens. Be the first in, you will be served quickest. Hungarians are early birds and love waiting.

7. This seems like a diatribe against Hungarians. It is not. I love this country and love the people in it. Just I hate but am used to Hungarian officialdom, and know the best ways to make it as painless as possible.

8. Take a picnic, you will be there for a while.

9. If you don't speak Hungarian, take a Hungarian who speaks English. (They don't have to speak it that well: if you are in Budapest, I can recommend some friends who could act as neutral parties/signatories if necessary, since obviously they don't know you but have University degrees in English and would be willling, I know, to act as signatory etc: just ask. My wife could and would do it for  you, but couldn't do it for me, because obviously she is an interested party in my case.)

10. IMPORTANT FROM THE OTHER SIDE. If you are British, you must register the birth in England within 5 days if it was born in England and Wales. The question does not make clear whether the baby was born in Hungary or born elsewhere, whether it is a practical or theoretical question. You must register the birth where it was born. Oddly enough my wife said to me the other day that if a baby is born in Britain it becomes a British Citizen. I know for a fact that is not true (because of marriages of convenience, and so on) but at that time I couldn't be bothered to argue: if in the US, yes it is, but in most countries simply being born there does not entitled you automatically to citizenship, you must show genuine ties to that country. Sometimes, depending on the national laws, this can come from the parents being citizens or the grandparents; you would have to check the local laws. "Dual citizenship" is a very vague concept and, for example, not actually respected by the US or UK; usually one must give up one's citizenship for the other' (certainly one must do so in the US at the age of majority i.e. 18, before that one can have two passports: I have seen this in practice on a flight from UK from US when a 14-year old being cared for by the airplane staff said quite properly "You need to put away your US passport now and give the US authorities your UK passport". This was not any attempt to evade: indeed it would have been quicker for the boy to have got through the lanes on a US passport: but to show genuinely he had UK citizenship and have the US INS stamp as such-- but at 18 he would have had to make the choice which. "Dual citizenship" is a far narrower concept than it means in daily life.

11. I am not a lawyer, but I have lived in 5 countries in my 45-year life, only 2 of them (UK and Hungary) within the EU. I am quite familiar with immigration procedures in general. But in particular in Hungary, TAKE THEM EVERY BIT OF PAPERWORK YOU HAVE. EXPECT TO WAIT. TURN UP EARLY. HAVE YOUR CARDS FROM THE POLGARMEISTER AND SO ON TO SHOW RESIDENCE AND ADDRESS, WHERE YOU WORK, WHATEVER BIT OF PAPERWORK YOU HAVE GOT. FLOOD THEM WITH GOODWILL. SHOW YOU ARE GENUINE.

12. If it is in order, congratulations on your new birth. If it is not a new baby, why are you registering the birth? My birth is not registered here. They only have it through other paperwork. (Address card, and so on.) I don't have a hungarian copy of my birth certificate lodged with any authority. Why do you need it? As I say, the question is very vague. If the child or adult is not newborn, you should not need to register the birth.

I hope this helps as a kinda non-answer, because the question is rather vague. If you refine the question, I can help perhaps with the particulars.

Mailman1942 :

Ok, where is the motor vehicle office or whatever it's called in Budapest? How can I get a more accurate answer rather than a maybe?

(Please excuse me, I don't know why the site puts this under "Registering a birth", this is about Mailman1942's question about Hungarian drivers' licenses (British English: Driving licences)

Your US driver's license within the EU generally is valid for a year after your PERMANENT MOVE TO AN EU COUNTRY.  (It's valid generally for tourist trips etc providing it is recognised that it meets the local standards of driving, which it pretty much automatically does for every country in the EU.)

The clock starts ticking in Hungary from the day you get your address card in Hungary, i.e. the day you register that you are registerd for local taxes etc in Hungary... you will have to get that paperwork first before you can apply for a Hungarian driving licence.

To give a parallel: I have a UK licence and a US license from Texas, long-expired but would be able to renew that were I resident in the US-- you see the parallel situation? I passed a Texas driver's license test, valid for 7 years, it is expired but I can hand it in, in the US, to get a Minnesota license or whatever were I to be a resident [not citizen] of the US) . I do not have a Hungarian licence. I have lived here four years. I cannot drive on my British licence. I have no need to, I live in Budapest and it is far easier to get around by public transport.

But were I to want one, I would have to take 30 hours of tuition, and pass a first aid test and a theory test and then a practical test. When my BKK ticket to go everywhere costs under 10.000Ft a month (about $40 USD, to go by any public transport within the budapest city limits, metro, bus, waterbus, tram, train, within city limits) , that is not worth my getting a licence.

I know this is not part of your question, but if you import a car you must, if you are resident, transfer it onto Hungarian plates after ONE DAY i.e. you must inform them beforehand that  you intend to keep it here. As a tourist you have the usual 3 week's stay, but if you intend to import it you cannot drive it after one day, legally.

You may have another thing to consider: in the UK your US license would only be converted into a license to drive an automatic (i.e. not manual, stick-shift) vehicle. I am not sure that applies in Hungary, it may not be the case, but unless you have a stick-shift license you may find you get a very limited Hungarian license unless you can PROVE that you drive a stick-shift. I know this for fact because my Canadian partner of seven years, although she drove a stick-shift in Canada, would only have been able to convert to an automatic licence in the UK. I am not sure of the exact rules here in Hungary, but it is something to be wary of, since of course in Europe manual drive is the norm, not the exception.

I hope this helps as general advice. There is not reeally an equivalent of the DMV etc, it is done by the local police and government. Your best bet is to check driving school companies ("Autoiskola") such as "Csigaver.hu" literally ("Csiga" is Hungarian for "snail", not because of their slowness but their patience) is one of the big ones in Budapest and I am sure they could give you professional advice.

I hope this helps as a general answer.

OK, to be a little clearer on the dual citizenship. This depends very much on the two countries. (Let's leave multiple citizenship out because it is just a generalisation of dual citizenship.)

Very few people actually have dual citizenship. They actually have two passports by not telling one passport authority that they have the other one. They do this by carefully deciding which passport to travel on. There are various just memento mori to do if you do this: make sure that you use the same passport on arrival as you did on departure!

Immigration authorities do talk to each other, so are generally well aware a minor is travelling on two passports. For minors, this generally is OK, but they must often choose at the age of majority. The age of majority varies from country to country so make sure you check beforehand.

Having known for many years (and nearly married and still very good friends) a now British citizen well beyond majority, she keeps her Canadian passport but travels on her British passport. Canada recognises dual citizenship but the UK does not; so were she to enter the UK on her Canadian passport she *might* have trouble, not because her Candian passport is not valid (it was issued at the London embassy) but because of the suspicion that she is trying to evade British immigration laws (not in spite of, but BECAUSE OF, she works in Britain, is a British citizen, pays taxes in Britain and so on). So she has, if you like, "One-and-a-half citizenship" in that she can use either in Canadaland but only her British one in the UK. It is similar in the US.

As a practical matter, it is best to get the baby a Hungarian útlevel (passport) at the earliest opportunity, but this requires the mother and father to show genuine ties to Hungary, which is not clear from the question whether either parent are Hungarian (I suspect not because the question is in English) or whether the minor was born in Hungary. If it is simply the parents who want to gain Hungarian citizenship, they should go through the usual channels and not use the minor as a trampoline to acquire citizenship by being the parents of a Hungarian:  that is a long way around to a short story that will be an unhappy ending.

There are five thousand refugees from last year's exodus from Syria awaiting Hungarian citizenship, because the EU told them to. It won't be quick. The Office of Immigration and Naturalization Service is here http://www.bmbah.hu/index.php?lang=en in English. Take the M4 to Bikas Park then take the 103 a couple of stops until you see (in American terms) a strip mall, it is on your left. (would be on the right in the photo on that site). In the strip mall there is a burger king and macdonalds and coffee shop and Tesco hypermarket etc, unless you want to buy a persian carpet instead.

I hope this helps.

S.

Bear in mind also that if your child is registered in Hungary, and assuming it is minor, anything the child does falls to you under Hungarian law AND ALSO under whatever other country the child is registered in. That is, one of the downsides of dual citizenship is that the child (via its parents or guardians if the child is a minor) is responsible for any act in either country of which it is a citizen. For example, were the child to be dual Israeli citizen then he or she would be obliged to do national army service in Israel; similarly until lately in Switzerland. The British embassy will not help you out if your child is in trouble in Hungary and is a Hungarian citizen, they will say "The child is Hungarian. You have said the child is Hungarian. The child is Hungarian and living in Hungary. We cannot help you.".

As far as I understand it, as far as prescribed names go, there is still a list of prescribed names but they have added rather many more to it than were before. I only have this from my Hungarian wife in hearsay over a game of scrabble (in English where I played on purpose a plausible Hungarian "not allowed" name, Szaborincs or something, which would not have been allowed in English scrabble obviously but it just turned up on my rack) but yes there is still a list of approved names, as I understand it, but it has got broader than once was.

My Hungarian missus and I together would be able to give you the exact Act/Decree but I would have trouble by myself to find it in Hungarian as it probably goes by a very obscure title, like most laws do.

I'm sorry I think this should be under another section about list of names. I think I have worked it out - profession.hu keeps adding ads for me to apply for jobs and I thnk it knocks the sections down, so I hit reply and it is fine, but by the time I answer it has inserted an ad and goes in the wrong section. Such is technology. I have tried to unsubscribe to profession.hu forever but it still keeps nagging me. I can only apologise and assert my good faith. I already have two second interviews lined up for friday and one on monday, none through profession.hu, and have worked in Hungary for four years,  have two houses and am buying a third, can speak various languages and even a little Hungarian, can also lift heavy things and do the washing and ironing. Bloody annoying that website.

SimonTrew :

...... she keeps her Canadian passport but travels on her British passport. Canada recognises dual citizenship but the UK does not; so were she to enter the UK on her Canadian passport she *might* have trouble, not because her Candian passport is not valid (it was issued at the London embassy) but because of the suspicion that she is trying to evade British immigration laws (not in spite of, but BECAUSE OF, she works in Britain, is a British citizen, pays taxes in Britain and so on). So she has, if you like, "One-and-a-half citizenship" in that she can use either in Canadaland but only her British one in the UK. It is similar in the US.
.....

The UK doesn't give a monkey's about multiple nationalities. Neither does the USA. The Hungarians don't care either.

We've got more nationalities (with passports!) in my immediate family you can shake a stick at - NZ, Australia, Hungarian, British of course and a good possibility of German appearing in the mix too. 

The only current one which is funny is my great niece and nephew who have an Arabic country citizenship as well as two other countries.   The parents keep quiet to the Arabic country about the other two countries.  Not supposed to have dual nationality there.

My kids are dual nationals with passports for the UK and HU.  It even says on my daughter's birth certificate that Dad's a British citizen.  No-one cares a jot. The kids use whichever one they feel like  or even better, if further afield, which has the cheaper visa.

As far as the USA goes, if one is a US citizen, they want you to enter on the USA passport, not the non-US one.  How do they know? - place of birth is on the passport of course. 

On the other hand, one of my close relatives regularly enters the UK on his Australian passport even though he actually lives there - he does it to assert his rights as an Australian.  Another time, he'll use the British one.  No-one in UK immigration cares about dual nationality.  It's not illegal and never has been.

THis may or may not help in particular. My wife took my surname as written here, TREW, on marriage in England. This causes no end of grief in Hungary because of course there is now "W" in Hungarian alphabet (except for foreign words etc) so most often in daily life she pronounces it "Trev". Also for much fun she can now do her married name in even more ways because do we do it in Hungarian name order or English name order? I don't think there is any great problem because most forms separate the surname from the first name, but sometimes they do. I write, as a non-Hungarian, in "foreign name order" if I can put it that way, and she writes it in "Hungarian name order"; but she uses my/her married name "Trew" not her maiden name. (I can give the full  names by email if that helps the example, but am not prepared to give out names here on an anonymous website). She could take "Trewné" and such but it is more relaxed than it could be and, again, that would seem to me to add to the complication.

I can only say, make sure you are registered under the Hungarian authorities as best you can be. Learn some Hungarian. It takes time, it is not a difficult language to learn. Different but not difficult. I was speaking to an Egyptian in Budapest, he has opened a new souvenir stall on the main railway station of egyptian crap, so I went in and said hello, and I haven't spoken Arabic in twenty years. I still said hello in arabic (Salaam) and what do you want (well, just looking around). I still remembered how to say "I will see you tomorrow. Or perhaps the day after tomorrow". Which to an egyptian from Cairo, means "Never". He won't make any trade except from me in Hungary. He is too relaxed. But I spoke in his language. Try that. You don't have to do it well. You just have to do it a bit. Don't be so cock-sure about your English. I assume you know what Hungarian Name Order is, and how wifes and so on may take their husband's name or their middle name as their surname etc? They are a bit like, to paraphrase "Anna Karenina" (not Hungarian but Russian)", "daughter of Karenin", that is what the "a" diminutive suffix means. I assume you know that. So you have a big choice of what your child's registered name would even *be* in Hungary, depending on whether it were a boy or girl, it would tend to include the father's and mother's first (Christian) names as middle names... does that help? It would depend on whether a boy or a girl which form they would take.

Many modern women keep their own name, not the "né" suffix (which is not the French "né" as (male) "born as" but Hungarian "wife of": linguistically that's what is called a "false friend" (look it up on Wikipedia), there. Some don't... it is in flux.

I would contact the embassy of my home country and inform them of giving birth in Hungary.
They should be willing and able to help you register the birth with your home country.
Things are never as hard to do if you do them one step at a time.

I gave our son my surname when he was born and later went to court to give him his father's surname.
He was born in Hawaii and although  we gave him a Hawaiian middle name the locals misspelled it on his birth certificate... Odd for sure since one would think they would know better, just messing with the Howlies I suppose. ( foreigners of any nationality are Howlies in HI, they even break it down further to , white, black or other Asian , very rude really)
I just went into the local city hall and told them to fix the spelling mistake, on his birth certificate they have both middle names listed with a line running through the misspelled name... messy but whatever can you do with gov. employees?
I wouldn't worry about anyone mispronouncing my last name, as a kid I was called Polack, from 99% of my teachers who one would think could sound out the w in my proper surname spelling... Just messing with kids like they love to do.Don't even have a O in the name. Racist really the way they used to say my surname.
In the US everyone says our surname different then in Hungary, they  call it out like Sassy and in HUngary it is more of a sh and e sound.
Doesn't matter as they say what you call me as long as you call me...For dinner anyways. Silly me.

True the US doesn't care much about people having dual citizenship, once though I was  "put out" my husband and son both used their HU passports on entry into HU while I was stuck in the "tourist" lanes waiting to show my US passport, they both laughed at me for having to wait in line.
My father was born in Poland and no one ever made a thing about that one way or the other..Except again for my lamo school teachers who chose to mis pronounce my surname like fools, they made it sound very, very "Polish" and it isn't even Polish, it is Ruysn, more western Ukrainian , a highlander...

Hello Everyone

If i may add this speaking as a foreigner with Hungarian wife

If your not officially married in Hungary you would have to go to a Gyn doctor first and she will give you a paper saying when did the pregnancy happen and what is the expecting day of delivery then make an appointment with city hall, this all to make sure your son gets your name, if your married obviously its not an issue.

They told us in hospital (Debrecen) we could choose any name as i am a foreign dad.

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