Authenticating a birth certificate involves the notary process with additional legal requirements beyond those utilized for other types of documents. If you need an authenticated copy of your birth certificate, there is a specific procedure that you need to to follow. Failing to follow the procedure established by law in your state will preclude you from obtaining the type of authenticated document you desire or require. Although the laws regarding an authenticated birth certificate vary slightly from state to state, the procedure to obtain this type of document are substantially the same.
Contact the Department of Vital Statistics
Contact the Division of Department of Vital Statistics in your state. Typically this state agency maintains offices in different locations throughout the state where you can make contact in person. In the alternative, you can send a written request to the agency. Finally, the typical Vital Statistics agency maintains a website through which you can request different records.
Request a Certified Copy
Request what legally is known as a certified copy of a birth certificate. A notarized copy authenticated by the governmental agency charged with maintaining the original is called a "certified copy." Whether you make the request in person, by mail or over the Internet, it must be made in writing. An in-person request or one made online is done with a standardized request form.
Pay the Fee and Get it Notarized
Pay the established fee to obtain a certified copy of the birth certificate. Obtain from the vital statistics agency the certified (notarized) copy of the birth certificate.
You cannot make a duplicate copy of your birth certificate and have a notary public notarize that copy. Only a representative of the custodian of birth records is legally able to authenticate a copy of a birth certificate. In most states, this is the Division or Department of Vital Statistics.
By personally going to a local office of the Vital Statistics and Records Agency in your state, you can obtain a certified birth certificate quicker than if you were to order the document via the Internet or through the mail. In most cases you will obtain a notarized birth certificate while you wait.
- "Notary Public Handbook : A Guide for New York;" Alfred E. Piombino; 2002