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How to Register a Birth and Get Your Baby's Birth Certificate | State Vital Records

The tiny feet of a newborn laying on a white blanket

For many people, having a child is a significant milestone in their lives. The days surrounding a baby's due date can be immensely stressful; with so much going on and so much to do, it's hard to keep track of everything. When the time comes for the baby to arrive, parents most likely won't be thinking about the birth certificate or registering their newborn's birth.

However, your baby's birth certificate is one of the most necessary documents for your child's future and essential to apply for a passport, government benefits, enroll in school, and more. If you're wondering how to register a birth and get your baby's birth certificate, State Vital Records is here to provide you with all the facts. Keep reading to find out more

Certificate of Live Birth vs Birth Certificate

Parents will receive a certificate of live birth and an official birth certificate after the birth of their baby. The US Standard Certificate of Live Birth is an unofficial document that’s two pages and 58 questions long issued by the hospital.

Most hospitals have to register a birth within 5 to 10 days after delivering a baby, and it may take upwards of 30 days to fully register with the local department.

In comparison, a US birth certificate is a vital record that officially certifies a live birth in the United States. The birth certificate contains critical information such as the child's full name, time and date, and place of birth.

How to Get Your Baby’s Birth Certificate

If your child's birth occurred at a hospital, a nurse will provide the necessary forms and assist you with the process. A midwife should obtain the required documents if new parents decide to do a home birth or at a non-traditional center.

As both parents fill out the paperwork for their child's birth certificate, they'll need to provide sensitive information, including their social security numbers, full name, maiden name, official ids, and current mailing address. After completing the documents, you'll have to pay anywhere from $15 and $30 for your child's birth certificate

Although it's required to write down your baby's name on the birth certificate, indecisive parents can change their child's full name up to the first six to twelve months (depending on the state)— no questions asked. After that, you may need to file an amendment.

How to Register a Birth Outside a Hospital

Whether you planned to give birth at home or didn’t make it to the hospital in time during delivery, you’ll be required to register your newborn yourself. To do this, you will need to provide the following evidence:

  • - Proof of the pregnancy (medical reports or preregistration forms).
  • - Identity of both parents (driver's license or passport).
  • - Evidence of live birth (from a medical observation or examination of the infant).
  • - Place of birth (address if the baby was born at the mother's home or a sworn statement from a witness).

Parents must submit the evidence above to their local county clerk’s office for a birth certificate to be issued. At this appointment, you’ll need to provide proof of identity. You might also have to supply a witness’s sworn testimonial of the facts, such as a notarized affidavit, if unable to provide another source.

When will you get the physical copy of your child’s Birth Certificate?

Depending on the state or county the birth occurred in, it typically takes anywhere from a week to a few months before receiving your child’s physical birth certificate in the mail. The format of each birth certificate varies by state, with the National Center for Health Statistics estimating that there are 14,000 different birth certificate documents in the United States. However, it must have the raised, multicolored and embossed seal of the city, county, or state where the birth was registered for it to be considered official.

Contact State Vital Records and Get a Copy of Your Certified Birth Certificate!

If you're a new parent, it's essential to get a certified copy of your child's birth certificate, just in case. State Vital Records makes this convenient and easy to do. Our quick, efficient process makes getting a copy of your child's birth certificate easy and affordable. Just fill out an online application, and as soon as it's received, we'll get to work expediting the entire ordering process. Not only that, we provide tracking so you can stay up-to-date on your order's whereabouts to ensure your birth certificate securely gets delivered and in the right hands.

Order online to get a certified copy of your newborn’s birth certificate today or to hear more about the other types of vital records we provide, including death certificates and passports Contact us today!