How to Verify a Birth Certificate

Verify a Birth Certificate

A correct birth certificate is an important part of the documentation you will need to complete a variety of tasks. Applying for a driver’s license, getting a Social Security card, major financial transactions and acquiring a marriage license all require a birth certificate as proper identification. Verifying that the data included on a birth certificate is correct can save you a good deal of headache and trouble in future endeavors.

Step 1

Look over the current birth certificate. See what information is listed on it, and make notes of what might need to be changed or corrected. Document any issues on a short list and keep it with the birth certificate so you can address all your concerns at once.

Step 2

Contact the state or county in which the birth certificate was issued. They will have the most accurate records regarding vital statistics and will be the best agency to contact to verify any information.

Step 3

Ask what the official markings on the birth certificate are. Most states and counties have certain official marks that will be present on every official birth certificate. These marks can include seals, stamps or watermarks that serve as proof it is an official state document.

Step 4

Check over the birth certificate to ensure that all of the required information is printed on the certificate. Full name, gender, date of birth, parent’s names, place of birth and delivering doctor are some of the common pieces of information found on most official birth certificates. Review this information to make sure it is correct.

Step 5

Review local birth announcements or hospital records if they are available to validate the information on the birth certificate. Birth announcements normally give the gender, name of parents and hospital information, so you can double-check this against the information you already have to assure it is correct.

Step 6

Speak with a records clerk if you notice that any of the information is incorrect. Any problems need to be addressed as soon as they are discovered as it takes time to correct a birth certificate. The clerk will advise you of any fees that need to be paid or any additional information that is required to process the request.

Step 7

Order a corrected copy of the birth certificate if necessary. The new copy should have the corrected information on it. Assure that it has the identifying markings on it from the issuing agency and that everything is correct.

Tip

Store your birth certificate in a secure place. Duplicate certificates can be time consuming to acquire.

Things You'll Need

  • Birth certificate

  • Personal information

  • Fees (if needed)

Warning

Never lie or falsify any official documents. It is illegal in most states to obtain records for illegal purposes and attempting to do so can lead to citations, fines or even jail time.