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Your Original Birth Certificate

Original Birth Certificate

An original birth certificate is the record created when you are born.  If you are an adoptee, your original birth certificate was sealed at the time of your adoption.

An original birth certificate typically contains:

  • The birth name of the adoptee
  • The date of birth of the adoptee
  • The place of birth of the adoptee (including hospital name)
  • The names of the birth mother and birth father at the time of the birth
  • The birth mother’s maiden name
  • Where the birth mother and birth father were born
  • The birth mother’s address at the time of the birth

When an adoption is about to occur, information on the birth father is often missing from an original birth certificate (e.g., the birth father is not known, the birth mother does not wish to disclose who the birth father is).  However, an original birth certificate sometimes contains details on the birth father as well.

If you are an adoptee, you have an amended birth certificate.  Typically, this altered birth record contains:

  • The names of your adoptive parents
  • Your date of birth
  • Your place of birth (including hospital name)
  • The names of your adopting parents
  • Your adoptive mother’s maiden name
  • Where your adoptive parents were born
  • Your adoptive parent’s address when you were adopted

It’s pretty obvious that obtaining your original birth certificate can be quite valuable when searching for your birth parents.

We have already posted that a number of states currently have open adoption records and original birth certificates are accessible.  Also, there are several additional states that are about to open records and other states where legislation to open records is pending.  Here is a link to our post:

States With Open Adoption Records  

Caution:  Obtaining your original birth certificate is typically not enough to find your birth parents without significant, additional research:

  • You will still need to obtain your birth mother’s current name (unless she was married at the time of your birth).
  • You will need to obtain your non-identifying information, allowing you or a company such as OmniTrace to conduct accurate database and genealogical research.  (Please read our prior posts on what non-identifying information is and how to obtain it.)
  • You will need to prepare a strategy to make contact with your birth parents once you have located them.

Requesting A Birth Certificate

  • Send a check or money order.  Don’t send cash.
  • Ask for a long-form original birth certificate.  This will contain more identifying information.
  • If you are ordering a birth certificate of somone who is deceased, provide a copy of the death certificate.

Remember, if the birth certificate that you received does not have the signature of the birth physician, then you may have an ammended birth certificate of an adopted child.

We hope our Original Birth Certificate post helps you successfully locate your birth parents.  Please write us with any questions you might have at: or call us toll free at: 888-965-6696.


Find Your Birth Family

There are 34 Comments

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  1. Sarah Harvey says:

    I was born in 1962 in Torrance as Baby Reid. I would love to find my birth mother whom I believe is from Mississippi.

  2. Wilmer Charles says:

    I was born July 24 1984 at the Flagstaff Medical Center in Arizona at 1230am. I am Bi-racial an would like to get in touch with my birth parents

  3. darlene george says:

    i was born December 23, 1954 in Baltimore,Md. my birth mother is dead but i would like to find any information on the rest of the family. the family’s last name is sutherland.

  4. deborah ann marshall says:

    i was born january 12th,1957 was adopted in 1962 by mr.and mrs charles j. williams which both deceased. i would like ti find any information on the rest of the family. i have a brother and a sister brother name is anthony scott.dont can’t remeber my sister name.on my adoptions papers my case worker or probation office or probation department of harris county 3540 dallas,west,houston tx

  5. Jessica Spencer says:

    I’m acctually looking for my mother’s birth parents, She’s been trying as well but has yet to fill out the paper work for the state. We live in Illinois and she was born somewhere around september 12 of 1965. She was adopted, to the best of my knowledge in Knox county or Springfield Illinois. Her adoptive parents are James Lary Wallace and Charlene Joanne Wallace, both still living. Neither of us have come across anything and I was wondering if it was possible to get some help.

  6. ( Luzy ) Beth Emilie Jansen says:

    My name is Beth and I was adopted when I was 2 1/2 years old and have been looking for info on my birth mother but it is hard to come by since I was adopted from a foreign country. I only pray that some day we can meet. To others out their in the same situation searching for birth parents as well don’t give upod knows where they are and where you and he wil make it a divine apointment, personally I beleive he just wants us to be ready physically and emotionally inside to go through it.

  7. Tabatha Elliott says:

    I am trying to locate my sister. I do not know much about her and don’t even know if she knows about me. I know that our birthday is 7 years and one day apart. I know that her name is Teresa and her last name at birth was Elliott, but I do not know if it has changed. I know that she was born in Riverside County, California. PLEASE if ANYONE can help me in further searching or if they know who she is PLEASE contact me at (my email) I don’t know if she was adopted or anything…I know that she was born February 18, 1976 and her mothers name is Ira….I AM HOPING FOR A LEAD!!!!

    • Annette says:

      I was able to get my original birth cert. in Pa. records now sealed again. Got them when very short window opened them. anyway for many years searched for birth moms name address etc. found nothing. Searched from 1981-2008. Knew I was born in Pittsburgh Pa . went to court house in Allegheny county marraige records. Took all of about 10 minutes and paid $3.00 Found out she married about 2-3 yrs after I was born. Gave me all info I needed. Her married name, marraige application, Husbands name, addresses, date they were married etc. I then entered her married name on free search site and got present address, phone number, even the number of children she had and their names and ages. I was very excited. Only thing I have never goyt in touch with her because I am not quite sure of how togo about it. I do not want to cause any problemsfor her and her family. Maybe she never even told them. Who knows! Some say I should just call, others say no write a letter, others say hire some one. I would love to meet her but as I said I do not want to cause any problems.Like how do I know if some one else opens her mail or if I called that could lead them to ask her too many questions. Don’t want to put her on the spot. I knew a girl that found her birth mom from another stae and just showed up at her door and the door was closed in her face. I would never just show up.mBut I think the phone call would be ok. Who wznts to wait tilit might be too late. I know this is rather long, (sorry) but I hope it has helped some. Please feel free to email me if I can help at all!! The best of luck to you!!

      • michael s says:

        Annette call her she did think like that after she had YOU, IM an American New York adoptee with no right to who I am or my health history, I was adopted 1961 MY adopted parents were Great parents to ME my hole life. IM not out to disrupt anyone life I jest wont to complete MY life seeking true identities

  8. Libby Coffin says:

    My husband and I are looking for his birth parents for health information. He was adopted in Long Branch, New Jersey, in the fall of 1942. He was born in Long Branch, New Jersey, on September 4, 1941, in the Dr. E. C. Hazard Hospital. He father was Lee VanBrunt and his mother, Ruth Bertha White. His adoptive parents were Col. and Mrs. Edward C. Coffin.

  9. Kevin Stolz says:

    Hi I am trying to find out information on my birth parents. I was born November 8th 1957 in Jersey City New Jersey and my parents used to have the adoption papers for both my sister and I but now that both of our parents have passed away but we cannot find our original birth certificates nor our adoption papers.


  10. May 17 1967 PA says:

    I am a female adoptee searching info on birth family.
    May 17, 1967 Clearfield PA. Please email me if you know anything.

  11. Deborah says:

    I am searching for my half sister who was adopted at birth, somewhere around the year 1960, in Poughkeepsie, New York. I was about 2 years old when she was born, I have very limited information about her, only my mom’s maiden name and the approximate year of her birth, and the city and state she was born in. Any help you can provide me with is greatly appreciated. I have been searching for her for about a month, after my mother received a strange phone call from a girl claiming to be her oldest grandaughter. Thank you so much, in advance for any help you can provide.


  12. CarolinaLopez says:

    i was born dec 12th 1987 im and i was adopted in 1990 and im looking for my birth mother, how do i go about finding her?

  13. cindy miller says:

    Im searching for my half-brother, Ive been told his name is Thomas Neil tucker born to Thomas Edward Tucker and Betty Jane Cox. I was told his father raised him and last known they were in some part of Ga.I was born in 1960 so I dont know what year he would have been born but I know it was before me I dont think he knows anything about me.If anyone has any info. please e-mail me. Thanks, Cindy

  14. Elizabeth says:

    I am a female adoptee that is looking for medical history and info on my birth parents.
    I was born in Albany, NY on January 6, 1973.
    I believe my birth parents were from the Buffalo, NY area.

  15. joseph allen dale says:

    i was born dec 3 1992 an my mother an father split my mother was dating this guy who is my father now an left me with him when i was 2 she barely ever seen me if anybody could help me find her i would be blessed i havent seen her in about 14 yrs an i feel like a part of my life is gone i wish everyday i could see her but i cnt i stay awake everynight lookin at the stars wondering if she ever thinks about me if not its cool i just want to know what she is like

  16. thomas says:

    i was raised in a foster home through catholic charities. i just found out my birth mothers name and age at my birth how can i go about finding her

  17. aishia says:

    Hi my name is Aishia and I was adopted from NYC, originally born in Brooklyn, ny on January 26, 1970 @ Kings County Hospital. Was adopted in the city of Syracuse,ny in 1978.My original name was Aisha Moore. Parents were married and on drugs from what I was told and was taken away. An attempt to reunite was unsuccessful. Not sure if I have any siblings, and My mother and grandmother argued about me. If this sounds familiar to someone you can email me and I am on facebook as well.

    • Lin says:

      Hi my name is Lin I am a New York adoptee January 13, 1970. Your non-identifying information is very very similar to mine. If you can please get in touch with me as soon as possible I would greatly appreciate it. You can go on my Facebook page and check out some photos to see if we may resemble. My profile is under Lin Picariello. I have some further info that I would like to compare with you. Thank you so much and I can’t wait to hear from you. Let me know what you think about the pictures!!!!! :)

  18. Marcia says:

    Hi… I was born on may 17, 1967.. I’m an adoptee? Last name was smith and I was born at saint joseph in Burbank, California. Any biological family out there?

    Thank you for choosing life! :))

  19. Jennifer Kwiecinski says:

    I am a female adoptee. I was born in Chicago, Ill. on Dec. 28th,1954. I don’t know who my father is, only his nickname is: Ducky. He was 18 yrs old and my mother Donna Jeanne Koch, was 16 yrs old. She had twin sister’s Cheryl & Joyce who were about 6 yrs or so, younger then Donna. My Father Ducky was born in 1935 and Donna was born in 1937. They were engaged to be married, but that fell apart, when she ended up pregnant. She gave me up for adoption. I have all the paper work. I was born in the Luthern Home, in Chicago. Where I stayed until I was adopted in April of 1956. I’m sorry for the length of this section. Needing to get a lot of info out there!! So if you need more info, just ask me. OK? Thank You,

  20. Wanda says:

    My name is Wanda and I was born in Unity hospital in Feb. 1970, however I learned that my fathers mother worked at King County in the morgue department. I have no first name but her last name was Reid ( not sure if that’s the correct spelling being that, that last name can be spelled differently). Her sons name is Harvey and he was a night club singer. He used to perform in a club called the Cheetah. The reason I made that comment is like most mothers, she may have bragged about how well her son sang. I would like to find out about my dad’s family. I have some medical issues and I really would like to know his families history. Thank you so much.

  21. michael s says:

    Mother French Canadian she was force to give up her baby boy at birth 06/21/1959 to the Nuns our lady of victory in Lackawanna NY. Father was in the Navy MY father and one brother pass away and have two living I know very little about myself seeking true identities Please contact me on Facebook Gmail if you can Help Thank you for reading my note

  22. paula says:

    Female born July 16, 1961. Born 4:27 p.m. Meadowbrook Hospital, East Meadow NY. Mother’s maiden name Barbara Goins. If you know of her please contact me on facebook (paula elaine).

  23. Angelina says:

    I was born in Tallinn,Estonia n looking for my biological mother n I have three sisters named Heidi, Karli, n Cathryn tiet is the last name. idk if that’s how their names are spelled n one brother whom I’ve never meet including my sisters. I was born on October 18,1993 n was adopted.

  24. Ashley says:

    I was born in Pensacola, Florida on April 30, 1999 and i was adopted. My birth mothers name is Samantha and thats all i know. I was born in West Florida Hospital in Pensacola, Florida. … any chance of finding my mom?

  25. Amanda (looking for mom) says:

    I’m looking for my mom and aunts birth parents or any family. Born 01-25-1957 adopted day of birth from Harris Methodist Hospital Fort Worth, Texas. At least we need Medical history if nothing more is wanted in contact.

  26. Josh says:

    I was born March 28, 1991. I want adopted till I was 12 but I wanna know my bio father who left when I was an infant. Idk of his name is even on my original birth certificate and my mom doesn’t have a lot of info on him..

  27. Stacey says:

    I was adopted in February 1964 in Los Angeles at Cedars of Lebanon hospital. My name on my sealed original birth certificate was Roach. I think my mothers last name was Johnson Roach. I think my fathers last name was Taylor. I am not looking to interfere in anybodys life- would like to see a photograph and know if I have anyone that looks like me

    • Dana says:

      Hi Stacey. Thanks for posting and if you would like professional help with your search, please call us, toll free, at 1-888-965-6696.

  28. ISO
    ( Manda Rei) she
    was born august 27th 1990 in Lagrange, Illinois. her birth mother was 21 or 22 at the time and had a 2 year old son who she kept. she was adopted to a Catholic family in New jersey. If anyone knows anyone from the Lagrange area who had a child adopted around that time please share this post.
    this is what manda posted..
    i have matching info for her..PLZ CONTACT ME with any info on her..

  29. andrea lynn says:

    I was born February28, 1966 at 8:28 pm at OLVFather Baker in Lackawanna, NY.
    I was a frank breach delivery and 2 weeks early. I am female and have dark reddish brown hair and blue eyes
    My birth mother and father were both 18 when I was born. She was 5’4, had dark brown hair and eyes, Catholic and of Italian descent. He was 5’8 or 5’9, had light hair and green eyes, Lutheran and of German descent.
    Both are from NY and both were factory workers at there time.