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Correcting Name Errors on a Birth Certificate in California

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Whether you made a typographical error or the hospital misinterpreted your handwriting on your child’s birth certificate, you have the opportunity to change it after the fact. In California, when you made small clerical errors, you can simply file with the Department of Vital Records an amendment to correct the birth certificate.

What Information Can Be Changed with an Amendment?

Amendments can only correct clerical errors made on birth certificates; they cannot change substantive facts. Thus, amendments can only change the following:

  • Correct spelling errors
  • Add information to blank items
  • Correct the spelling of the parents’ names or their statistical information

A Court Order Is Not Required

Unlike changing the child’s name entirely or deleting a parent’s name off of the birth certificate, a court order is not required. The parents merely need to file paperwork.

What Is the Procedure for Correcting Errors?

To amend a birth certificate, parents should submit the following items:

  • Affidavit to Amend a Record (Form VS 24)
  • Appropriate fee
  • Notarized Sworn Statement (if copy of amended record is being issued)
  • Hospital documentation (if due to hospital error)
  • Photocopy of parent’s birth certificate (if appropriate)
  • Photocopy of current birth certificate (if you have it)

Although some items are optional, supplying them may expedite the process. And if you do not submit all the required papers, then your application will be returned.

Consulting an Attorney

Finding the necessary documents to correct errors in your child’s birth certificate may be a challenging process. An experienced family law attorney can help you navigate the system and file even file the amendment.

Photo of page author Mabel Yee

, LegalMatch Legal Writer

Last Modified: 11-07-2017 12:20 AM PST

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