To obtain the Malaysian Birth Cert, the baby has to obtain the Singapore Birth Cert first. This can be easily done. Quite a number of hospitals in Singapore provide this service and no need for you to go all the way to ICA. Of course, you will pay a bit more to do this in the hospital comparing to ICA. Anyway, the Singapore Birth Cert is just to certify that the baby is born in Singapore and has nothing more than that which will let you get your newborn a Singapore Citizenship directly (if you ever think of doing so).
Okay, now you have the Singapore Birth Cert ready. What’s next?
Based on Singapore ICA regulation, foreign parents need to obtain a valid travel document (which is passport la) for their newborn from their own country’s Embassy or High Commission within 42 days of the child's birth in the Republic. If you are planning to only bring your child out after the confinement period (some Chinese pantang that mummy and newborn should not go out during the confinement period), please count the days carefully, else ICA will fine you for not doing so.
Why this becomes a concern?
It takes 7 days to process the Malaysian Birth Cert (Why take 7 days? Can someone PLEASE enlighten?). With the Birth Cert ready then only can proceed to apply Passport for the baby. Meaning, you have to go to High Commission twice to get both the Birth Cert and Passport done. First time is to apply the Birth Cert. This might take you half a day (at least 2 hours) to do so. Second time is 7 days later, after the Birth Cert has been ready for collection, you have to go back to HiComm to collect the Birth Cert then proceed to apply for the passport. This takes you a day to get the passport done.
Do you own maths, with only 220 passport applications processed per day in Malaysia High Commission, a long queue with passport applicants, weekends and public holidays have to be factored in. You have to ensure that you are still within the 42 days allowance to move your butt to ICA building during weekday, to extend your baby’s stay in Singapore (and proceed to apply long term visit pass or PR).
Okay, back to Birth Cert application.
Get ready 4 passport size photos of your baby (2 to be used for the birth cert application and 2 for the passport application). Photo taken must be able to see the baby’s eyes and with light blue background (the standard Malaysia passport photo background). You can go to a photo studio to get this done or do it yourself. Just make sure you know how to print the correct passport-size photo using your photo printer at home.
Bring the original documents below along, with 2 copies of each in photocopied in A4 size paper:
1. Both Parents’ Malaysian IC (front and back)
2. Both Parents’ Malaysian Birth Cert (front and back) (make sure your Birth Cert is in good condition, otherwise they will request you to laminate it. Those in plastic sleeves are ok.)
3. Malaysian Marriage Certificate (Singapore ROM will not be accepted, Ah huh, you need to get this done asap if you don’t)
4. Malaysian Passport (Details page)
5. A fee of S$15.00 is payable for the registration.
Don’t try to push your luck with your ‘cincai’ attitude by bringing incomplete documents and photos not according to the requirements. You will end up wasting your time.
With these documents ready, go to HiComm with both the parents and baby. You’ll need a pass to enter the HiComm building. Exchange the pass using your Driving License, ATM cards, or any other ‘approved’ cards (they listed a few but I think these 2 cards are commonly possessed by everyone in Singapore) at the guard house. All adults entering the premise are required to exchange for the pass. The guard will not accept your ICs (neither your Malaysian IC nor Singapore Blue IC/EP) as they will be used inside later.
Ask the guards for the direction where is the place to do the birth cert. They will point you the Consular Office (building is on the right when you walk passed the nice water-running staircase/walk-path, wonder how much they spent on this, instead of improving the processing time.), which is another building next to the Immigration. Some people really act-smart and end up go to the wrong place. Don’t you know that the time is very important and precious for yourself when you are in the government departments to run your errands?
Inside the office, there will be a lady officer (some say she is just a guard, anyway, who cares?) asking, “Who need the baby form?” That’s the time you need to raise hand and get the 2 identical baby forms, in actual is the "BORANG D" from this lady.
Note: BORANG D is the birth cert application form. BORANG W is real birth cert. You need to fill up the BORANG D to apply for BORANG W.
(I have read from other blog and forum that they queued at the counter to get the form. Perhaps, the system has changed, but seriously, not improved hor… You can imagine the messy no-queue-crowd around the lady, asking this, asking that. Count on your own luck to jump to the fast lane queue.)
Fill up the forms as quickly as possible. Once done, bring all your documents and approach the same lady again (the crowd might be still there surrounding her, apply your learning “If you can’t beat them, join them” if required). She will check whether you have all the complete documents. She will affix your baby photos onto each form, split and staple the documents to the 2 forms. She will ask you to submit the forms to the ‘old-pawn-shop-look-alike’ counter (Which I really don’t understand, who is going to rob this bloody HiComm? You can’t hear them properly, you need to put your ear to the damn hole to listen to what the officer inside is saying and reply by putting your mouth right into the hole). Another officer will take care from there now.
There is no queue number given for Birth Cert application. Queue number is only given to those in the same office for Citizenship renunciation and Registration of Marriage. The officer will call you by the baby’s name. You will need to show all your original documents and make the SGD$15 payment. The officer will ask you to bring your baby to go to the Interview Room. The purpose is to get your baby’s finger print in a quiet environment.
(At this office, you will notice there are a lot of people are here to renounce their Citizenship and not so many babies are here to get their Birth Cert. What a contradict scene. Sigh…)
Once completed, you will be given an A5 piece of paper (Birth Cert Receipt, stating HiComm is holding the parents’ Malaysian IC and the Baby’s Singapore Birth Cert) with a date to return to collect your baby's proper Birth Cert.
With the A5 receipt in hand, you can now go to the Passport application counter 10 at Immigration section to request for a passport application form (Green Form). Counter 10 is not just giving the application form, but senior citizen, pregnant lady, disabled and parent with newborn baby are also in the same queue to “preprocess” their passport application. It takes you so long to get to your turn.
At this counter (again, the old-pawn-shop-alike counter, although is serving the elderly or disabled, but the counter is a high counter and without chair provided. These people need to stand for 15 minutes or more to complete their process. You can imagine the scene that the elderly with shaking hands, legs and tongkat, standing in front of this counter make you blood-boiling.), tell the officer that you want to get the Passport Application form for your newborn passport application, but you’ve just done the Birth Registration today. You will collect the birth cert 7 days later. If you don’t explicitly tell him so, the officer thought that you are applying passport now. He will hand you the form and ask you to complete the form first then come back to the same counter again.
By the time you fill in the form and come back to the counter, someone behind you previously may now at the counter and the officer is serving that person now. Hence, you will have to wait for the person to complete his/her process before the officer can attend to you, unless you really have the guts to interrupt the process and force the officer to process yours first. So, don’t waste your time unless you really don’t mind. What you need is just to get the passport application form and make sure the baby’s photos have been verified by the officer. You can fill up the form later at home.
The officer will check your baby photos and proceed to complete his section on the form. This form will then be returned to you with the baby's photos glued on it. The reason for this is to let you come back to submit the baby's passport application 7 days later, without bringing the baby along after you have collected the birth cert from the Consular office.
(It’s impossible for you to complete the Birth Registration and Passport application on the same day. You need to come to HiComm at least twice and thrice if you include the passport collection as 1 more time to get them done. Why can’t we streamline this process? Are our HiComm officers having fun for troubling us like this?)
You can complete all these in about 3 hours time. Unlike the passport application, there is no limit for Birth Cert application per day. Therefore, it’s really no need for you to bring your baby there so early in the morning unless you plan to take only half day morning leave. Anyway, plan your leave wisely, as you will need another full day to get the passport done for your newborn 7 days later.
Yes, this is a long winded writing, but just about the birth registration. I will tell you about the passport thingy later. I have to save my breath to complain and suggest improvements to our HiComm (Of course, the complaints and suggestions I’m going to write are just for fun purposes. I doubt they are going to read such writing. Even if they do, how soon can they change and improve?).