Birth certificates are one of the primary ways of establishing identity and are necessary for obtaining passports, drivers licenses, and much more.
These documents are known as vital records and include information such as the birth name, the date and time of birth, the sex of the child, the place and or location of birth, the names and occupations of the parents of the child, the birth weight and length of the child, the date of birth registration, the name of the informant registering the birth, and a birth registration number.
While this document in and of itself is not considered proof of identity, it is a way to establish identity, and if often used in conjunction with a state issued drivers license or photo ID for these purposes. In the United States, there are two different types of birth certificates, long forms and short forms.
Long forms are exact photo copies of original birth records and usually include information about the parents of the child, including address, race, and other statistics. . Long forms also include the signature of the doctor who delivered the child.
Many states now use Electronic Birth Registration Systems, which virtually eliminate the need for long form hard copies, but these forms are still in use in some form or another in almost every state, even those that have gone paperless, so to speak.
Short forms are also known as computer certifications and are abridged versions of long form certificates that are generally easier to obtain. This is because while a long form is a copy of the actual certificate, a short form is a verification of the existence of the certificate.
Additional short forms include wallet sized short forms, which provide basic information, and commemorative certificates, which are often given out by hospitals as keepsakes, and, depending on individual state and country regulations, are not always considered valid certificates of birth.
If you need to obtain a copy of your birth certificate, or the birth certificate of your child, you should check into the specific rules and regulations of the state where the birth occurred. There are many companies that specialize in locating birth certificates for a small fee, but again, there are still rules and regulations in effect as to who has the authority to access and obtain them.
For genealogy purposes, some states allow anyone to obtain the birth records of individuals who have been deceased for seventy five years or more. The good news is that with a little research and information, birth certificates can be obtained for almost anyone.
Express Birth Records is a privately owned company created to assist the public in ordering certified copies of vital records such as Birth Certificates Online , Death Certificates, Marriage and Divorce Certificates.