Mothers do not need to recognize their children, because the bond of filiation results from the birth itself. Acknowledgements of paternity takes place when fathers are not married to the child's mother and the parent-child relationship must be officially established. This record is registered by declaration to the civil status office, before the court or by a last will and testament (posthumously). Acknowledgement of paternity may occur before or after the birth.
|Total||21 419||21 912||
||13 705||14 262||
|After birth||7 714||7 650||
|Paternity acknowledgement1 by child age|
|0 months||1 996||2 043||
|1-11 months||4 578||4 477||
|24 months or older||547||564||
Source : FSO – BEVNAT
From 1980 to 2005, most children were recognized after birth. Since then, the trend has been reversed. Today, the number of child acknowledgements by fathers is seven times higher than in 1980. This increase is parallel to the rise in the number of births outside marriage.