Order your California (CA) Birth Certificate Online

Order your California (CA) Birth Certificate online in a few simple steps. You can order a certified copy of your vital records in minutes and avoid long lines and government offices.

Legal Disclaimer: US Birth Certificates is a privately owned website that is not affiliated with, not owned or operated by any government agency. US Birth Certificates is an independent preparer that provides vital records application preparation assistance services. If you are looking for blank forms, you can get them for free at the relevant state office.

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California Birth Certificate Replacement

Birth records have been maintained by the California Department of Public Health - Vital Records (CDPH-VR) since 1907. Vital records offices hold vital statistics and keep records of life events kept under governmental authority, which include birth certificates marriage licenses, and death certificates. The California Department of Vital Records is responsible for issuing certified copies to the public.

If your birth certificate was lost, destroyed, damaged or stolen you will need to expedite a California Birth Certificate Replacement. Thanks to our online service, you do not need to personally go to a vital records office or agency. You can easily complete your Birth Certificate application from the comfort of your home.

There are two types of birth certificates you can request in California:

The authorized copy is a certified birth certificate that you’ll be able to use to apply for a passport, prove your citizenship, get a social security card, register at school and other legal purposes. To request this certificate, you must provide a notarized sworn statement declaring that you are authorized by law to receive the certified copy.

If you are not authorized to apply for an authorized copy, you can still obtain an informational copy of their birth certificate. However, this copy will have the words “Informational, not a valid document to establish identity” imprinted across the face of the copy, and depending on the year of event, signatures and Social Security numbers redacted. Most people use informational copies for genealogy purposes.

As of May 7, 2025, U.S. citizens and residents must have a REAL ID-compliant driving license or ID card to enter federal facilities and board commercial aircrafts. Requirements to obtain a REAL ID may include proof of identity, such as a certified copy of the birth certificate.

How to Get a Birth Certificate in California

Getting a birth certificate in California can be a straightforward process. However, there are a few requirements that must be met in order to do so. By ordering a certified copy of your birth certificate online, you will avoid having to go to the vital records office in person. This saves you plenty of time and money.

The CDPH-VR office issues authorized and informational copies of a birth certificate. Authorized copies of birth certificates are generally needed to apply for a passport, obtain a social security card, driver’s license, register a child in school and more. An informational copy of a birth certificate can only be used for informational purposes.

You will be able to tell the difference as a certified copy of the birth certificate is issued by an authorized person defined by California Health and Safety Code. All certified copies have an official state registrar’s raised, embossed, impressed or multicolored seal, the registrar’s signature, and the date the certificate was filed with the registrar’s office.

The state of California and the Health Department require that you verify your identity by notarizing your application. In order to obtain a Certified Copy you must complete the sworn statement that we provide along with your application package and then you will need to sign it in front of a notary public.

Once your application package is completed you will need to mail it to:

California Department of Public Health
Vital Records – MS 5103
P.O. Box 997410
Sacramento, CA 95899-7410

california birth certificate

There are several vital records offices in California where you can obtain a birth certificate such as: Alameda County, Chula Vista, Contra Costa County, Fresno County, Los Angeles County, Monterey County, Orange County, Riverside County, Sacramento County, San Bernardino County, San Diego County, San Mateo County, San Francisco County, Santa Clara County, San Joaquin County, Stanislaus County, Sonoma County, Ventura County, , Tulare County, Kern County, and cities like Long Beach, Concord, City of Sacramento, Oakland, San Jose, San Diego, Stockton, Santa Barbara County, Anaheim, Santa Ana, City of Los Angeles, City of Fresno, Irvine, among others.


How to Request an Apostille

The California Secretary of State provides an Apostille in order to authenticate California public official’s signatures on documents that will be used outside of the U.S.

There are two ways in which you can request an apostille Birth Certificate in California: by mail and in person (in Sacramento and California).

The California Secretary of State provides an Apostille in order to authenticate California public official’s signatures on documents that will be used outside of the U.S.

There are two ways in which you can request an apostille in California:

By Mail: You can request an apostille by mail through the Sacramento office and providing the following requirements:

  • A document signed by a California public official or an original notarized and or certified document
  • A cover sheet, stating the country where the document will be used
  • A check or money order payable to Secretary of State for a total amount of USD 20.00 per Apostille requested
  • A self-addressed envelope for the processed document to be returned. You may use a mail tracking service but need to provide a pre-paid postage

Mail documents via the United States Postal Service should be sent to:

Notary Public Section
P.O. Box 942877
Sacramento, CA 94277–0001

Documents being mailed via any other service (e.g. Fedex, UPS, DHL) can be sent to this address:

Notary Public Section
1500 11th Street
Sacramento, CA 95814

Documents are generally processed within 8 to 10 business days from the date they were received.

In Person: You can request an apostille in person in Sacramento and California offices.

Secretary of State (Sacramento)
1500 11th Street, 2nd Floor
Sacramento, CA 95814

Secretary of State (California)
300 South Spring Street, Room 12513
California, CA 90013

To request them in person you can head to one of these two offices between 8:00 am and 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday. Requests are processed on a first come, first served basis. The fee is USD 20.00 for each Apostille requested as well as an additional handling fee of USD 6.00. It is not possible to pay with cash, but you may pay with check, money order, and a Visa or Mastercard.

You should also note that if a birth certificate has the signature of a Health Officer or Country Registrar prior to presenting the document for authentication at any of the offices, one of the following is required:

  • The birth certificate must be certified by the county clerk’s office in the county where it was issued, or
  • You can request a certified copy of your birth certificate from the State California Department of Public Health

Who is Eligible to Apply

In order to apply for a certified copy of a birth certificate, you must meet eligibility requirements.

People eligible to order an authorized copy of a birth certificate include the following:

  • The certificate holder, a parent or legal guardian of the certificate holder.
  • A child, grandparent, grandchild, sibling, spouse, or domestic partner of the certificate holder.
  • A member of a law enforcement agency or a representative of another governmental agency, as provided by law, who is conducting official business.
  • A party entitled to receive the record as a result of a court order, or an attorney or a licensed adoption agency seeking the birth record.
  • An attorney representing the certificate holder or the certificate holder’s estate, or any person or agency empowered by statute or appointed by a court to act on behalf of the certificate holder or the certificate holder's estate.

apply birth certificate

California Birth Certificate Cost

Obtaining a certified copy of a California birth certificate carries a cost. In California, the fee of the birth certificate is: $29, each additional copy also costs $29.

While some states offer rush service, the state of California currently does not offer rush service. Do take this into consideration when requesting your vital records.

California Birth Certificate Processing Times

The California Department of Public Health - Vital Records (CDPH-VR) estimated processing times for certified copies of birth certificates vary according to a few factors.

Below you will find a detailed list of estimated times. It is possible that if the office is experiencing a high number of requests, the requests may take longer to process. The processing time will start when the CDPH-VR receives your request.

When using our service, you can avoid long lines and having to travel to government offices. You will be able to expedite your birth certificate with ease from the comfort of your home. All you need to do is complete our straightforward form and send it to the respective California vital records office. After it has been processed, your certificate will be sent by mail.

View the table below to find out the processing time and to choose the correct application method for your date of birth:

Year of birth Type of request Processing time
1905 – 1964 Electronic Submission 4 to 4.5 Weeks
Mail-In Request 5 to 5.5 Weeks
1965 – 2019 ​ Electronic Submission 2 to 2.5 Weeks
Mail-In Request 3 to 3.5 Weeks


California Vital Records Offices

Below is a complete list of Vital Records offices in California and County Recorders who can provide Birth Certificate copies. Keep in mind that County Recorder Offices may not be near you, but they can sometimes process the requests faster than the CDPH-VR.

FAQs about California Birth Certificates

  • How to get a birth certificate in California?

    Getting a certified copy of a California birth certificate is easy. Long waits at the vital records office are no longer necessary since applying online for a CA birth certificate is much more convenient.

    First, fill out the online application form.

    Next, our experts will revise your form to ensure it has no errors, so your birth certificate can be issued directly.

    Then, you will need a notarized sworn letter stating that confirms your identity for a certified copy.

    Afterward, print and sign your form, and mail it with the required documents listed in the personalized instructions.

    Once your request is processed, your birth certificate will be sent to your home.

  • How long does it take to get a birth certificate in California?

    Processing time for a certified copy of a California birth certificate may vary depending on several factors.

    Unfortunately, rush service is currently not available.

    Certificate bearers born between 1905 and 1957 have a longer waiting time than those born from 1958 to the present.

    In general, CA birth certificate applications are usually processed within 5-7 weeks.

    However, some applications are rejected after this waiting time.

    The most frequent cause for a rejected birth certificate request is an error or typo on the application form.

    Therefore, the surefire way to have your birth certificate issued directly is to have your form revised by an expert before submitting it.

  • How much is a birth certificate in California?

    Requesting a certified copy of your California birth certificate entails the payment of the state fees.

    Processing a legally-valid CA birth certificate carries a fee of $29.

    If you order more than one copy of the same birth certificate at once, each one will carry the same $29 fee.

    The fees must be submitted at the same time as the California birth certificate application.

    Unfortunately, rush service is not available at this time.

  • Can I get my birth certificate the same day in California?

    If you need a certified copy of a birth certificate in a single day, you must be aware that the CDPH-VR does not offer walk-in services.

    The exact processing times for electronic submissions and mail-in submissions are detailed above and take between 5-7 weeks, in most cases.

    Your best bet would be to order the California birth certificate online in advance so that the document is sent to your home once it is issued.

    Certain County Recorder Offices can sometimes process California birth certificate applications faster than the CDPH-VR.

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ID Verification
Some states require that you provide a copy of your photo ID card to order a certified copy of your birth certificate. Our complete application package provides all the information on which documents you need to provide and how to go about it.