MAIL APPLICATION FOR BIRTH RECORD
Processing times are estimates and subject to change with an increased volume of customer applications.
FAILURE TO PROVIDE INFORMATION REQUESTED ON THIS FORM MAY RESULT IN SIGNIFICANT
PROCESSING DELAYS AND/OR DENIAL OF YOUR APPLICATION.
Walk In: Same day service in most cases. Hours are Monday-Friday 8:00 am - 4:00 pm. DSHS - Vital Statistics Section, 1100 W. 49th
St., Austin, TX 78756
to order online. Online orders are mailed 15-20 business days after receipt of the request.
Mail In Orders: Processed and mailed 6 - 8 weeks after receipt of the request. Mail to: DSHS - VSS, P.O. Box 12040, Austin, TX
78711-2040. For current processing times, please see our website at: https://www.dshs.texas.gov/vs/processing/.
Processed and mailed 20 - 25 business days after receipt of the request. Must be sent to the Texas Department
of State Health Services - Vital Statistics Section via an OVERNIGHT mail service, such as FedEX, LoneStar, or UPS to: DSHS – VSS
MC 2096, 1100 W. 49th St., Austin, TX 78756
Long form Birth Certificate - Most comprehensive birth record. It is a copy of the original birth certificate. It will also show a history of
corrections that have been made to the birth record. This form is often used for requesting passports.
Short form Birth Certificate - An abstract of the birth record. This birth certificate will only show current information for the child's
name, date of birth, place of birth, sex, and name of parent(s). This form will not show a history of corrections. This form is often
used for school records and is acceptable for most purposes.
Heirloom birth certificate - Heirloom birth certificates are abstracts of the birth record. They are primarily used for framing and
display. The information on an "heirloom birth certificate" is similar to a "short form". Examples of heirloom birth certificates can
be seen on our website at http://www.dshs.texas.gov/reqproc/heirloom.shtm.
Verification Letter - A verification letter will include the child’s name, the date of birth, and the county where the birth occurred.
Verification letters are available for births that have occurred since 1903. Verification letters are not considered legal substitutes
for certified copies of birth certificates. The VSS strongly recommends that applicants ensure a verification will satisfy its
Military Personnel with current deployment orders – Texas Government Code 437.217. EXEMPTION FROM FEES FOR MILITARY
PERSONNEL. A member of the National Guard on federal active duty, or a member of the armed forces of the United States on
active duty, who is preparing to be deployed to serve in a hostile fire zone as designated by the United States secretary of defense
is exempt from paying the following state or local governmental fees the member incurs because of the deployment to arrange
the member's personal affairs: (1) fees for obtaining copies of: (A) a birth certificate. MILITARY ID AND MILITARY ORDERS ARE
Foster or Homeless child or youth – Texas Health and Safety Code 191.0049. BIRTH RECORD ISSUED TO FOSTER CHILD OR
YOUTH OR HOMELESS CHILD OR YOUTH. On request of a child or youth described by this section, the state registrar, a local
registrar, or a county clerk shall issue, without fee or parental consent, a certified copy of the child's or youth's birth record to:
(1) a homeless child or youth as defined by 42 U.S.C. Section 11434a; (2) a child in the managing conservatorship of the
Department of Family and Protective Services; and (3) a young adult who: (A) is at least 18 years of age, but younger than 21
years of age; and (B) resides in a foster care placement, the cost of which is paid by the Department of Family and Protective
Services. DOCUMENTATION OF STATUS IS REQUIRED.
Copies of birth certificates for births that occurred within the past 75 years can be requested only by the immediate family
of the person whose name is on the birth certificate. See Section 181.1(13) of the Texas Administrative Code for who qualifies as
an immediate family member. An immediate family member is the child, their guardian, their children, spouses, parents,
siblings, or grandparents.
Applicants who are not immediate family members must provide legal documentation (such as a court order establishing
guardianship) that demonstrates a direct, tangible interest in the birth certificate.
The applicant must include a copy of his or her valid photo ID issued by a governmental entity. See Section 181.28 of the
Texas Administrative Code for a complete list of acceptable forms of identification. You also can see VSS’s page
on acceptable identification in English (http://www.dshs.texas.gov/vs/reqproc/Acceptable-IDs/) and Spanish
If a record is not on file, our office will issue a “not found” letter.
☐ Complete steps 1, 2, and 3 of the application. Please type or print clearly.
☐ Complete step 4 of the application and have it notarized, if requesting a birth certificate.
☐ Sign and date the application.
☐ Make sure the application is original and not a photocopy and there are no cross-outs or white-out.
☐ Enclose a copy of a current driver's license, passport or state identification. See complete ID list on our website.
☐ Enclose appropriate fees. Make checks or money orders payable to DSHS – Vital Statistics.
For more information, go to: https://www.dshs.texas.gov/vs/requirements.aspx.
For the status of your request, contact VSS by telephone at 1-888-963-7111 or online at: https://www.dshs.texas.gov/orderstatus/.
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