The Importance of a Texas Birth Certificate

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Since 1903, the Texas Department of State Health Services (DHSH), a division of the Texas Health and Human Services agency, maintains and manages the Lone Star State’s resident vital records. The Texas Department of State Health Services manages a variety of vital records, some of which are accessible to the public without any restrictions. Certain official vital records, however, like an order birth certificate Texasrequire the requester to meet specific state-defined qualifications.

To order birth certificate Texas the individual requesting a Texas birth certificate from this he Texas Department of State Health Service agency must be an immediate family member of the individual listed on the Texas birth certificate or the individual themselves. However, it should be noted that a birth certificate in Texas becomes accessible to the public after the passage of the 75th anniversary of the birth date listed on the document. [TAC 25 181.10]

The state of Texas defines an immediate family member (by blood or marriage) as one of the following relationships — a parent, a sibling, a grandparent, a spouse, or a child. Individuals who need to order a birth certificate in Texas and are not considered immediate family members must submit:

  • The court-issued or legal document that grants the requester authorization to receive a birth certificate for an individual born in the state of Texas. Examples of these types of legal permission would include a court-issued document that establishes a legal guardianship, or a verified Last Will & Testament that names an executor/executrix, to name a few. And/or,
  • A notarized, written statement authorizing the Texas Department of State Health Services to release a certified copy of the requested Texas birth to the named person. The named, authorized individual is required to present a valid ID for identification purposes.

The Importance of Ordering a Birth Certificate in Texas

As a general rule, it is always a good idea to have birth certificates for family members in a location that is safe but easily accessible. School-age children often need their birth certificate to enroll in school or to join the community’s sports programs designed for kids.

Official copies of Texas birth certificates are required –

  • As evidence of one’s legal identity for insurance/inheritance matters, etc.
  • As appropriate identification when applying for social security, Medicare, & Medicaid benefits, if eligible.
  • As valid documentation when applying for a marriage license or a driver’s permit/license, among others.
  • As verifiable identification when applying for a United States passport to vacation or visit family around the world.

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