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How to apply for a duplicate birth certificate

how to get a lost birth certificate

This article explains how and where to get a certified copy of the lost or misplaced original birth certificate in India. You will get step by step guidance on the application procedure on how to obtain a copy of the birth certificate from the municipal corporation in your city.

Importance of a birth certificate

When was the last time you looked at your original birth certificate? Probably decades back! It is hoped that you have kept that original birth certificate in a place that you remember. That certificate is not some obscure document which you feel you may never need. Very recently I realised its importance when I received my Aadhaar UID card (which is also equally important as it can be useful to avail of various Government schemes ). My date of birth on the card is completely incorrect – date, month and year. When I called up the toll free number to ask how to get it changed, I was instructed to scan and upload my birth certificate online on the Aadhaar website. It was then that I was really glad that my parents had meticulously maintained a file of documentary records for me and my siblings. Each of us have a file with not just every school report, college mark sheet and certificate we won during our academic years, but also that all-important original birth certificate. Over the years it has yellowed with age but it is there. Hurrah!

Now let's assume you don't experience that Hurrah moment on discovering that you are totally clueless of where you have kept your original birth certificate. In fact, it is even more likely that you are 100% sure you don't have it at all. Perhaps you are a youngster appearing in a State sports meet where you need to show a photocopy of your birth certificate as proof of age. Or you need to submit it with your application for a Government job. Don't forget that an application for a passport as well as for a driving licence requires accompanied photocopies of the birth certificate. Even for that momentous day when you tie the knot with your sweetheart you need it – and not just the wedding rings!

Who issues a duplicate copy of the birth certificate?

Don't despair if you have lost or misplaced your original birth certificate. You can apply for a copy of the original birth certificate. This application is known as an application for the non-availability of birth certificate. This non-availability certificate is issued if the registration of birth has not been done and in the case of loss of the original birth certificate. Note that the issuing authority, which is the Public Health Department of your municipal corporation, does not give a duplicate. What you will be issued is not called a duplicate but a second original of the birth certificate. This second original is considered to be legally valid as it will have the original stamp of the issuing authority. It thus differs from a photocopy of your original certificate wherein the stamp too is a photocopy & thus not original.

Here's how you go about getting the copy:

Step by step procedure to submit application for duplicate birth certificate

  1. You need to have the following details which have to be filled in the application form:
  • Your complete name
  • The name of your parents, including first and last names. In the case of your mother's name, it will be her maiden name before marriage
  • Your exact date of birth
  • The address of your parents
  • The place of birth where you were born
  • Visit the office of the municipal corporation in the city where you were born. It is that specific city's municipal corporation which will have the record of the registration of birth. In case of different municipal zones/wards in various areas of a city, then you need to visit the zone/ward office of the area where you were born. For example,

    if you wish to apply for a duplicate copy of birth certificate in Mumbai, Maharashtra and you were born in that part of the city which comes under the G-South Ward of the BMC, then you have to apply to that ward. office

  • You will need to pay a small fee for the issuing of the copy of the birth certificate. This fee varies from one State/city to another.
  • On paying the fee, you will be given an application form in which you need to carefully fill in all the details. Here it is important to note that if your handwriting is not clear, you are likely to end up with a certificate with a lot of misspelt names! Hence it is a good idea to fill in the details in block letters to eliminate errors in names on the certificate. You can confirm if it is ok to write everything in block letters
  • You will be issued a receipt and will be instructed when you can get the copy.
  • Sounds simple? Not quite! Note some important points:

    Important Tips for application of duplicate birth certificate

    • Be prepared to stand in a serpentine queue if you visit the municipal office at around the same time as everybody else! This is a good possibility around the time when school admissions are on or when a major recruitment drive for a Government job is on-going.
  • Make sure you know the timings of the municipal office as also on which days it is closed. Don't waste that day you took leave from work to get this work done!
  • A municipal corporation office is usually quite large, spread over many rooms/floors. Ensure you go the correct floor and the correct application counter. Not all offices have clear cut sign boards to indicate which counter is for what application. You may think this is a minor tip, but actually it isn't – you may end up in a queue which is for applying for a duplicate copy of a death certificate.
  • In some municipal offices, you may be required to give an application on plain paper. In others, you may have to submit some kind of affidavit along with your application. Find out beforehand what all is required.
  • It is a good idea to have attested photocopies of the documents that may be required, such as your school leaving certificate. Find out beforehand what are the requisite documents needed.
  • In many municipal offices, they could be having the option to get your birth certificate copy sent to your address by courier. In others, you may have the option to submit your application by facsimile (FAX) and send the fee by cheque. So you can find out about the options available to you.
  • You can have a hassle free time if the municipal corporation office of the city where you are applying provides online applications for a duplicate birth certificate. In such a case, all you have to do is to visit the official website and follow the instructions provided.
  • Websites of Municipal Corporations of major cities in India

    In case you are unable to find at the below-mentioned websites the information you are looking for, then go to the 'contact us' page. You can call up the municipal office and find out the requisite procedure & fee for getting the copy of the birth certificate.

    • Delhi:
  • Mumbai:
  • Kolkata:
  • Chennai:
  • Bengaluru:
  • Hyderabad:
  • Ahmedabad:
  • Jaipur:
  • Dehradun:
  • Thiruvananthapuram:
  • Bhopal:
  • Patna:
  • Ranchi:
  • Guwahati:
  • Panaji:
  • Chandigarh:
  • Bhubaneshwar:
  • Imphal:

    Category: Insurance

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