The judgment is an answer to a general legal question as to whether Polish law allows the incorporation of foreign birth certificates where parents are of the same sex. The question was prompted by the authorities' refusal to transcribe into Polish law the foreign birth certificate of a child born to two mothers, both of whom are Polish nationals. The applicant argued that since lack of a transcribed birth certificate inhibits her child's access to a Polish passport, it in practice leads to a situation that is identical to statelessness.
The public prosecutor appealed to the Provincial Administrative Court in Kraków (“Court”) against the transcription of A.Z.’s birth certificate by the Head of the Registry Office in Krakow into the Polish Civil Register, claiming that it is contrary to the fundamental principles of the legal order of the Republic of Poland because A.Z.’s birth certificate listed two women as parents. The appeal was dismissed.
The Court stated that due to the large number of states that have ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child and because many states include similar provisions in their national legislation, legal experts argue that the right of a child to nationality is part of international customary law, therefore everyone should acquire a nationality at birth.
An initiative was submitted to the Constitutional Court of Serbia to assess the provisions of two by-laws that prevent registration of children in the birth registry immediately after birth, in cases when the children’s parents do not possess personal documents, on the grounds that the by-laws are not in accordance with the provisions of the Serbian Constitution, the Family Law and ratified international conventions which guarantee the right to birth registration and personal name to every child, immediately after birth. The Constitutional Court rejected the initiative, on the grounds that possession of an ID card is legally binding on all citizens of the Republic of Serbia who are over 16 years of age and have permanent residence on the territory of the Republic of Serbia.