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How to Get Copies of a Birth Certificate & Social Security

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A birth certificate and social security card are vital documents. A birth certificate is proof that you are a citizen and along with your social security card, both are necessary in order to get a driver’s license, passport and also to find employment. If you are unable to find your birth certificate or social security card, it is possible for you to obtain copies of them. You can find out how to get a copy of your birth certificate from the Center of Disease Control, the Department of Health or the Office of Vital Records in your state. You can get a copy of your social security card from the U.S. Social Security Administration.

Find your date of birth, the city you were born in, your parents’ names and the hospital you were born in. This information will make it easier for you to get a new birth certificate.

Go to the website for center of disease control (See Resources). This site will let you know what office you will need to contact to find vital records such as birth certificates. Search for “vital records” and click on the state that you were born in and you will see the office that you will need to contact. You might need documentation such as a driver’s license in order to obtain a new certificate. You can also search for the Department of Health or the Office of Vital Records in your state to get a new copy of your certificate. The cost of a new birth certificate will vary from state to state. Some states will allow you to apply for a birth certificate through the mail or online. Doing the application online will usually allow your application to process more quickly.

Go to the website for the Social Security Administration (See Resources). Look at the middle of the page and click on “Social Security Card”. Print the application to request a social security card. Select replacement card and then choose type of issuance, whether the card is for an adult or child and if you are a US citizen. Click “submit”. A screen should pop up which will tell you what documents you might need. You might need a birth certificate, driver’s license or passport. It will tell you to take your application and documents to your local social security office and will allow you to search for an office near you. The Social Security Administration states, “Keep in mind that you have a limit of three replacement cards. Legal name changes and changes in immigration status that require card updates may not count toward these limits. Also, you may not be affected by these limits if you can prove you need the card to prevent a significant hardship” (See Resources).


Be patient. Depending on the rules in your state, it may take weeks to get copies of your birth certificate and social security card or it might only take 24 hours.