Obtaining Birth Certificate in Iowa
A birth certificate is a document that certifies the birth of a child. A vital report, the birth certificate could be an original document that certifies the birth or a certified copy of the registration of birth. In the United States of America, a birth certificate is issued by the Vital Records Office of the state or territory, where the child is born. While every state is required to record births, the information they provide on the certificate may vary.
Like every state in the US, the state of Iowa needs to register the birth of children within the state. Iowa started officially recording births from the July 1st, 1880. Therefore, in order to obtain a birth certificate in Iowa, the individual will need to send a request for the same to the Iowa Department of Public Health, Bureau of Vital Statistic
Who can request a birth certificate?
A birth certificate is a highly classified record and is not displayed openly for public viewing. Only the following individuals can request for a birth certificate in Iowa:
- The individual whose name is on the record
- Spouse of the individual
- Legal parents
- Any other legal guardian or representative
Requirements for Requesting the Birth Certificate in Iowa:
- A duly filled application must be sent for the certificate, along with the proof of entitlement.
- Certified documents like government-issued IDs must be submitted along with the application. The documents must be valid and unexpired.
- Administrative fees of $15 must be paid for processing the application. In the case of online payment, an extra fee for handling charges will be levied.
- The individual will have to make the request for a birth certificate or a certified copy to the Iowa Department of Public Health either in-person, online or through the mail.
Methods for Requesting a Birth Certificate in Iowa:
An individual can request a birth certificate or a certified copy in Iowa in four ways. However, do note that the processing period of the application may vary. It is therefore advisable to apply for the certificate well in advance to avoid any last-minute delays.
Request the records via phone:
The individual can call VitalChek's toll-free number to request the certificate. VitalChek is the only third-party vendor allowed to accept orders for the vital records of Iowa by the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH). The administrative fee of $15 will need to be paid during the application. An extra charge of at least $9 per order will be levied for orders to VitalChek over the phone.
Request the records via mail:
A notarized application for the certificate, along with a legible copy of the government-issued photo ID, will have to be mailed to the Department of Public Health. A check or money order of $15 must be sent along with the application to 'Iowa Department of Public Health' at the address provided on the IDPH official website.
Request the records online:
An online request can be sent on the VitalChek website (www.vitalchek.com). The applicant will be required to fill the requisite form and pay the administrative fee of $15. They will be also required to pay an extra starting from $9 per order, to get the order from VitalChek.
Request the records in-person:
The applicant can also visit the Iowa Department of Public Health offices in Des Moines, Iowa. The written application will need to be duly filled and signed in front of the vital records office. A valid government-issued ID and a fee of $15 will have to be submitted with the application. It is important to check the office timings, before paying a visit.
In case the Department is unable to find the requested birth record, they will inform the applicant, however, the fees paid by the applicant will not be refunded.