This measure will introduce a requirement for parents to formally register the birth of their child as a condition of receiving the Baby Bonus, for births on or after 1 July 2007.
A number of parents delay registering births, in some cases until many years later. This measure will improve the timeliness of birth registrations and the accuracy of birth statistics and population estimates. This will help governments to plan for future service delivery and the funding of schools and health services.
Parents will need to register the birth and claim the payment within 26 weeks of the child's birth to be eligible for the Baby Bonus.
The Baby Bonus is a non-means-tested payment that recognises the extra costs associated with the birth or adoption of a new baby, including the loss of income while on unpaid maternity leave.
More than 720,000 families have benefited from the payment between 1 July 2004 and 31 March 2007. The payment is currently $4,133 and will increase to $5,000 in July 2008.
From 1 July 2007, parents will need to make a declaration on their Baby Bonus claim form that they have lodged their child's birth registration form with the relevant state or territory Births, Deaths and Marriages Registry, in order to receive the Baby Bonus. Parents receive the birth registration forms in hospital, at the same time as their Baby Bonus claim form. Parents may be asked to provide proof of their child's birth registration at a later date.
Total Government Funding:
Total funding for this measure will be $1 million over five years.