California law requires new parents to register the birth of their baby born in the state within 10 days of birth. To register a birth, doctors, midwives or parents must submit a birth certificate to the local health department. In order to properly process and register birth certificates, the doctor, midwife or parents must adhere to procedures outlined by state law. After the state health department registers the birth certificate, parents may obtain notarized copies.
Verify the attending physician at the hospital completes the birth certificate. If you give birth in a California hospital, the hospital staff and attending physician complete the required paperwork and submit the birth certificate for registration. Be sure the original birth certificate contains correct information when you sign it; original birth certificates may not be changed once registered.
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Request the midwife or physician in attendance complete the birth certificate. If you give birth outside of a California hospital, the attending physician or midwife must complete the birth certificate. Request they fill out the “Worksheet and Affidavit for Out-of-Hospital Births” form and the birth certificate, Certificate of Live Birth Form VS10A.
Complete the Certificate of Live Birth Form VS10A. If a midwife or physician did not attend the birth, California parents may complete the “Worksheet and Affidavit for Out-of-Hospital Births” and Certificate of Live Birth Form VS10A themselves.
Gather required materials. For out-of-hospital births, parents must gather evidence and specific documents to register the birth certificate. Gather proof of parent identity, evidence of the mother’s pregnancy, proof of the California county where the birth took place and proof of a witness’ identity.
Make an appointment with the local health department to submit the “Worksheet and Affidavit for Out-of-Hospital Births,” Certificate of Live Birth Form VS10A and all supplemental evidence.
Bring the newborn baby to the health department appointment. The local health department requires the baby to be present to verify a live birth took place. After the appointment and acceptance of all forms and evidence, the department of health registers the birth certificate.
Register a birth certificate prior to the baby’s first birthday; otherwise, the California health department may charge fees.
- baby image by Diane Stamatelatos from Fotolia.com