Document Requirements for Amending a Birth Record - Minnesota Dept. of Health

Document Requirements for Amending a Birth Record

To add missing information to a birth record you need to send in at least one supporting document. To change information on a birth record you must send in at least two supporting documents. You may need to provide more documents depending on what you want to amend.

Document Requirements

Each document must show the information exactly as you want it to appear on the birth certificate.

Each document must also show other information that matches the birth certificate already. Most documents need to show at least two of the following:

  • subject’s last name
  • subject’s date of birth
  • subject’s place of birth
  • a parent’s name
  • a parent’s date of birth
  • a parent’s place of birth

If the subject is less than 7 years old, each document must be from the subject’s first year of life OR from at least one year before the date of the amendment request.

If the subject is seven or more years old, each document must be from before the subject’s third birthday OR at least seven years before the date on the amendment request.

Each document must be an original, a certified copy issued by a government office, or a copy authenticated by the person issuing the document to you. All original documents will be returned to you when we're finished with our process.

  • Authenticated means an employee from the place giving you the record declares in writing that the document they are providing you is a true and accurate copy of the record on file. At minimum, the document must list the name and address of the organization and be signed and dated by an employee of the organization.

Birth, death or marriage certificates, military discharge forms, and court orders must be issued by a government office – certified documents usually have a stamp or seal on them.

We must be able to read each document - each document must be sharp – not blurred or smeared.

Supporting documentation must be in English or translated into English. A qualified translator must translate documents in other languages (birth certificates, marriage certificates, and other records) into English; the translator must sign the translation in front of a notary public.

Documents must be free of erasures, cross-outs, corrections. Documents must not be modified in any way.

Acceptable Supporting Documents

Acceptable supporting documents must show the certification item as you want it to print after the amendment AND at least two items that we can match on the current record before it is changed. We will accept the documents listed below if they meet all of the requirements above and the information supports the requested amendment:

  • Authenticated U.S. school record or official school transcript
  • Authenticated hospital, clinic or social services record
  • Valid (unexpired) passport – NOT a notarized photocopy
  • Original or certified copy of U.S. military discharge papers (such as a DD214 form)
  • Certified (government issued) copy of a marriage certificate
  • Certified copy of a U.S. court order
  • Certified copy of a birth certificate of a child
  • Certified copy of a birth certificate of a parent or sibling (these can only be used to amend parent information)
  • U.S. baptism certificate or other church record with a phone number to the church so the record may be verified
  • Original or certified copy of a Certificate of Naturalization AND certified Petition for Name Change
  • Official tribal enrollment record
  • Social security number history (Numident) printout from the Social Security Administration Office
  • Other documents the Office of Vital Records determines are acceptable

Documents NOT Accepted

  • hospital souvenir birth certificate
  • driver’s license
  • state, employee, or other ID card or permit
  • social security card or statement
  • application of any kind
  • insurance card or policy
  • paycheck stub
  • tax return
  • statement or bill
  • newspaper article
  • other documents that do not meet all of the requirements listed above

Court Orders

Court orders must:

  • Be certified
  • Be from a U.S. Court
  • Show the subject’s name and date of birth as they currently appear on the birth record
  • Specifically direct the birth record to be amended in the “it is ordered” section if the parent’s names are to be changed on the subject’s birth record

For information on getting a court order please see the Minnesota Judicial Branch website.

Court-ordered name change

For the subject of the record

A subject, who has a court order directing a name change on his or her own birth record, must complete the Birth Record Amendment Application if the subject is 18 years of age or older. The certified copy of the court order must accompany the amendment application.

If the subject is a minor, a parent must complete the Birth Record Amendment Application for a court-ordered name change and supply a certified copy of the court order.

If the subject is incapacitated, a parent, guardian, or legal representative must complete the Birth Record Amendment Application for a court-ordered name change and supply a certified copy of the court order.

For the parent(s)

A court order to change the names of the parents on a subject’s birth record must:

  • spell out the parent name(s) before and after the name change
  • specify that the parents’ names be changed on the child’s birth record, and
  • list each child's name if the parents' names are to be changed on more than one child's birth record

Requirements to amend gender

To change the sex of the subject on a birth record, the requester must read the Birth Record Amendment Packet (PDF). Supporting documentation may be either of the following:

  • Medical certification of appropriate clinical treatment for gender transition in the form of an original letter from a licensed physician. The letter must identify the subject using the name and date of birth on the current birth record.
  • Certified copy of a court order that specifically directs amendment of the subject's sex on the birth record.

If you still have questions about amending a birth record after reading this information, contact us at health.vitalrecords@state.mn.us or 651-201-5970.

Updated Tuesday, 22-Oct-2019 10:58:18 CDT