Registrar of births, deaths, marriages and civil partnerships

Career outlook for

Figures and forecasts for roles at the same level, which require similar skills and qualifications.

Average UK salary

Currently employed in Scotland

Jobs forecast

This information is supplied by LMI For All, where data is currently available for Scotland.

What's it like?

You would take details of important events in people’s lives, like getting married or the birth of a baby, for the official records.

You would collect and record information for all births, marriages and civil partnerships in the local area. You’d also take details of deaths and stillbirths. All this information is then kept by the National Records of Scotland.

You would:

  • Talk to parents after their baby is born
  • Speak to relatives after a death
  • Fill in computerised and paper records
  • Issue birth or death certificates
  • Notify the legal authorities if there are suspicious circumstances in a death
  • Collect statistics to send to the National Records of Scotland
  • Take payment for copies of certificates
  • Keep accurate records

You’d need to be able to relate to people from all backgrounds and cultures.

Some registrars conduct civil ceremonies. You could perform marriage, civil partnership, citizenship and naming ceremonies at register offices and other venues.

Many of these events are emotional times for people. Sometimes, when recording a death or stillbirth, people may be very upset. Patience and empathy is very important in this job.

You could also work as a celebrant, which means you would conduct civil ceremonies such as marriages, civil partnerships and civil funerals but wouldn’t work on registering births and deaths. As a celebrant you might be employed by a local council, or you could work independently.

If you share humanist beliefs, you could become an officiant or celebrant of the British Humanist Association.

Working conditions

Hours

In a full-time job you would work 37 hours a week, including some weekends and bank holidays. You may also work on-call outside of normal office hours. Part-time work is often available.

Environment

You would normally be based at a local register office. In some remote areas, you may be based at home or in a local post office and work when needed.

Travel

You may attend marriages in various types of locations such as hotels, stately homes and civic buildings.

UK employment status

Full-time

Part-time

Self employed

Here are some of the skills that people in this job would be most likely to have:

  • Communicating with people
  • Explaining things
  • Working as part of a team
  • Being tactful
  • Working on your own
  • Accuracy
  • Using computers

Build your skills

Your skills can help you choose the career that’s right for you. You can build your skills through work, study or activities you do in your spare time.

To understand more, have a look at what are my skills?

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Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you’ll need.

Qualifications

Entry qualifications depends on each individual local authority but administrative experience and computing and keyboard skills may be necessary.

You would normally enter as an assistant registrar

You normally need three subjects at National 5 including English.

Useful subjects

  • English (required by most employers)
  • Maths
  • Administrative subjects
  • ICT
  • Social studies.

Languages may also be of value.

You will also need

  • Assistant Registrars must be at least 18 years old
  • Registrars must be at least 21 years old
  • A driving licence is useful and may be essential