Correcting A Birth Certificate
If your child is under 12 months of age, the fastest way to correct a birth certificate is to bring the original certificate and a completed correction application to the hospital where your child was born. You cannot correct a birth certificate online.
If the hospital where your child was born made a mistake on the birth certificate, you must submit your application and the newborn certificate you received to the hospital.
People have many reasons for correcting a birth certificate, often because they haven't decided on a name when the child is born. Answers to basic questions about the correction process below are followed by instructions for specific kinds of common corrections. These instructions also are included with the application.
Who can apply for a correction?
- The person named on the certificate if he/she is at least 18 years old
- Parents or guardians of the person named on the certificate
Anyone applying must submit current, signed photo identification. If the names of both parents appear on the certificate, both parents must sign the application, and each parent must submit his/her photo ID.
What kind of supporting documents do I need?
Generally, a supporting document must have been established prior to the child's 7th birthday, or it must be at least 10 years old. This helps establish that your documentation is legitimate.
- Child's name
- Listed date of birth
- Parent's name(s)
Original supporting documents on official letterhead or with an original seal are required, depending on the kind of correction your are making. Photocopies or notarized copies are not accepted. More information.
If your supporting documents are in a language other than English, you also must provide an English translation. Embassies and consulates often will translate official documents for you. We also accept translations from established translation services.
If you can't provide the required supporting documents, call 311 to ask us for help.
How do I make a correction?
- Download your birth certificate correction application. If you are unable to download the application, please call 311 or 212-639-9675 outside of New York City to request one.
- Complete the application by following the instructions on the form and sign it. If the name of both parents appear on the birth certificate, both parents must sign the application.
- Get the required photo identification. If the names of both parents appear on the birth certificate both parents must submit their photo ID. If you are submitting the application by mail, make a photocopy.
- Gather the documents to support the correction you are requesting. You must provide the original supporting documents. Photocopies or notarized copies are not accepted. More information.
- Make one copy each of the original supporting documents. Copies must be submitted in addition to the originals. Original documents will be returned to you.
- Calculate the fees on the form. Each corrected certificate costs $15. Most corrections require a $40 processing fee; some are made without charge (see Common Corrections below). The processing fee may cover multiple corrections submitted at the same time.
- Follow the instructions on the form to apply in-person or by mail.
- Check the processing time for your order.
How do I correct a certificate of miscarriage or still birth?
Use the birth certificate correction application. There are no fees for these corrections.
- To submit a still birth certificate correction, you must be a parent named on the certificate or, if both parents are deceased at the time of still birth, an aunt, uncle or grandparent.
- To submit a miscarriage (spontaneous termination of pregnancy) certificate correction, you must be a parent.
- Funeral directors may also apply for these corrections.
Common Corrections: How Do I . . . ?
- Add my child's first and middle name BEFORE his/her 1st birthday? Answer
- Correct my child's first or middle name or add my child's middle name BEFORE his/her first birthday? Answer
- Add or corect the spelling of my child's first or middle name AFTER his/her 1st birthday? Answer
- Correct the spelling of my child's last name? Answer
- Correct my child's date of birth or sex? Answer
- Legally change my name or my child's name? Answer
- Remove information? Answer
- Add the name of another parent? Answer
- Correct spelling of parent's information? Answer