How to Get a Birth Certificate Replacement

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A birth certificate is an important legal document that you will need for many different situations. In these situations, you will need the original birth certificate or a certified copy in order to prove your date of birth and identity. While it’s important to keep important documents like a birth certificate in a safe place, losing them can be common. Documents and other important paperwork can get lost in the shuffle of a move or misplaced when you take them out to use them. However, getting a birth certificate replacement can be easy, as long as you have the right documentation available to you. You will need a birth certificate for a driver’s license, marriage license, enrolling in school, applying for certain benefits, or applying for a U.S. passport, so make sure you have your certificate before you need it.

To get a birth certificate replacement, contact the vital records office in the state where you were born. Depending on the state, you may be able to get a certified copy with no identification. Some states accept alternative ways to verify your identity. You will have to contact the state to figure out what it requires. Some states accept your sworn statement, while other states may take a notarized letter from the father or mother whose name is on the certificate and a copy of their ID. Replacement fees will vary depending on the state where you were born. An in-person request could allow you to have the certificate in minutes. If you request a certificate through the mail, you will likely have to wait four weeks or pay for expedited service. Some states could offer overnight service. There could be a longer wait in the late summer months when parents need birth certificates for kids going to school.

Some companies make it easier to order a replacement and a certified copy. You can do this online and you will need to provide pertinent information for the certificate of the person you need. You will need to enter dates and reasons for the certificate replacement, along with your personal information. You may not have the option to order a replacement for someone else’s birth certificate. The relationship you have to the person named on the certificate will be the primary factor in whether you have the authority to get a copy.

If you are replacing your birth certificate after a fire, flood, or other natural disaster, it’s important to note that government agencies will mail the replacement to your home. If you lost your home, you will need to contact the local post office to pick up mail there or request to have mail forwarded to a location temporarily.