ordering an official birth certificate

5 Trusted Ways to Ensure An Official Birth Certificate

Updated 9/7/18 – Having a valid, official birth certificate can be more important than ever in today’s world, especially when looking to renew a driver’s license, apply for a passport, or even just register your child for school sports. So how do you know if you’re ordering an official government-certified birth certificate? Read on to learn more and know that VitalChek is always here to help, working directly with the government agencies that issue official birth certificates.

There are a number of reasons you might be ordering an official birth certificate for yourself or a family member, such as enrolling in school, joining a sports team, getting a passport or renewing a driver’s license. In the past, this may have meant waiting in line for hours at the local courthouse or waiting weeks to order a copy by mail. Luckily, the internet has made it easier than ever to obtain a birth certificate or other documentation. However, not every internet resource is a good one. Some websites only offer unofficial certificates or even keepsake copies. This type of copy may not meet the requirements of many governmental agencies for legal or official purposes. Before you order a copy of your birth certificate online, discover these five ways to ensure that you order an official copy.

  • Certificates are only issued by the official government agencies. They can be ordered through those agencies or through an authorized service of that agency. Check the government agency’s website for official ordering services.
  •  Purchase from a secure and trusted company – While any number of sites offer the ability to order a birth certificate or other document, there are a number of questions you should ask yourself:
    • Does the company have a trusted name and/or reputation?
    • Is the company authorized by the government agency responsible for issuing the certificate?
    • Is the website registered with the Better Business Bureau, and if so what is their rating?
    • How long have they been operational, and what do past customers have to say about them?
    • Does the website offer a secure ordering process?

These details are proof that the company cares about your needs and keeping your personal data secure. Be cautious of unreliable companies that may not offer authorized or secure services.

  • Expect to provide detailed information – Because official birth certificates are proof of a person’s identity, detailed information is necessary to ensure the certificate doesn’t fall into the wrong hands. For an official, certified document, many states will require you to verify your identity before you can place your order. This may be done in one or more ways including by providing your Social Security Number, submitting a copy of your valid photo-ID, and/or by answering a series of questions for which only you should know the answers.
  • Know what type of birth certificate you need – Do you want an official or informational copy? The reason that you request the certificate will dictate what type of certificate the order will processed for. An official copy can typically be used for legal purposes such as for a passport or driver’s license, while an informational copy is typically used for genealogy or family history.
  • Determine if the certificate contains an official seal – An official, certified copy bears the embossed, impressed, multi-colored, or raised seal and signature of the issuing authority.

You do not want to be stuck with an unofficial document that many not work for all your needs. Exercise caution when you order any type of documentation and make sure you are ordering an official birth certificate. Spend a little extra time assuring this authenticity and you will be able to relax with the confidence your article is genuine and will meet your requirements for registration, licensing or travel.

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