Tips to Preserve and Store Your Birth Certificate
While most people understand the importance of documents like birth and death certificates, they often overlook the importance of preserving and storing these documents properly. If not stored correctly, a document can wrinkle, rip, or get stained, making it unfit for use. As a result, you’ll be required to order another copy of the birth or death certificate and risk an extensive wait time for its arrival.
It is prudent to keep a copy of a birth certificate on hand, but you must be sure to treat it with care. Read on to learn tips on preserving and storing your birth certificate.
What Do You Need a Birth Certificate For?
There are many reasons why you should have your birth certificate available at home. When applying for a new job or driver’s license, you will be asked to produce your birth certificate. A birth certificate also proves your age when you apply for military service or marriage.
Many services and activities require multiple identification forms, and a birth certificate is the most common document you’ll need to provide. Ensuring the safety and security of your birth certificate is paramount.
The following are some common instances that you will need to have your birth certificate readily available:
- Registering a child for school.
- Obtaining a passport.
- Obtaining a driver’s license.
- Obtaining a Social Security Number (SSN).
- Registering for a new job.
- Researching family history or genealogy.
Where to Store Your Birth Certificate
There are several important documents that every person should keep in a safe, secure location – and a birth certificate is one of them. While it may be tempting to simply tuck your birth certificate away in a drawer, there are a few good reasons why you shouldn’t.
First of all, drawers can be easily accessed by burglars or other intruders. If your home is broken into, the last thing you want is for your most important documents to fall into the wrong hands. Secondly, drawers are not always airtight, which means that your birth certificate can become damaged by moisture or insects over time. Finally, if you ever need to present your birth certificate as proof of identity, it will be much easier to find if it’s kept in a designated safe spot.
For these reasons, it’s best to store your birth certificate (and other important documents) in a safe or another secure location.
Reasons to Preserve and Store Your Birth Certificate
A birth certificate is an essential piece of paper that helps prove your citizenship. Here are some reasons why it is worth it to preserve your birth certificate and store it properly.
When stored properly, your birth certificate can remain intact for a long time. All the details will be clearly visible and the document will remain in its best shape.
You Can Preserve the Heritage
If you are into genealogy and keep the birth certificates of your ancestors, storing them properly is essential. Yes, you can order a birth certificate again with the help of TX-DPS Records, but the new document won’t have the same essence as the older one.
No Hassles of Reapplying for a Birth Certificate Again
Ordering your birth certificate can be daunting, and also time-consuming. If you don’t preserve your birth certificate and it gets damaged, you will need to go through the process of ordering another one and waiting for its arrival.
It Is Readily Available
If you preserve and store your birth certificate, it is readily available and you can use it whenever you need it. Also, you don’t have to search for it since you know where you have stored this important document.
Tips to Preserve and Store Your Birth Certificate
Here are some quick tips to preserve your birth certificate and store it properly for years!
- Make Multiple Copies
The first step to preserving and storing your birth certificate should be making multiple copies of it. Having several duplicate copies ensures that you have access to the information on the birth certificate and you can provide it when needed.
Some people prefer storing their birth certificates on cloud storage. Capture clear pictures of your birth certificate and other essential documents, and store them on a reliable cloud storage platform such as Google Drive or Dropbox.
2. Preserve It
Preserving a birth certificate is the most vital part of the overall process. By preserving your birth certificate, you can add a lifespan to the document and protect it from damage. It has been shown that well-preserved birth certificates can even withstand natural calamities such as exposure to dirt and water. Here are some tips for preserving this important document to keep it in good shape for a long, long time.
Handle with Care
All birth certificates are delicate and should be handled with care. Handling a document such as a birth or death certificate incorrectly may cause them to stain, wrinkle, or even tear. Always wash your hands before handling the document to ensure the certificate doesn’t get dirty or that the naturally-occurring oils from your palms won’t transfer onto your birth certificate.
If possible, you should wear a pair of gloves when handling birth certificates to keep the documents in perfect condition.
Put It in a Plastic Bag or Sleeve
As experts suggest, it is recommended to store the certificate in an archival clear sleeve or bag. These plastic covers keep the birth certificate in good condition while protecting it from moisture, dirt, and other elements.
For added protection, consider placing the plastic sleeve in a flap envelope (with the certificate within), as it will ensure double protection.
Those into genealogy who possess multiple birth certificates in the family collection might prefer an archival metal edge box or acid-free file folder.
Keep It Away from Dirt, Moisture, and Heat
The goal of preserving your birth certificate should be to keep it in a neat condition and protect it from damaging elements such as dirt, water, and heat. Choose a place that’s away from direct sunlight and any source of heat, such as a radiator. The chosen location should also be free from dirt and excess moisture.
3. Store the Birth Certificate
There are several ways to store a birth certificate and other essential documents. These include fire-resistant safes, safety deposit boxes, and filing cabinets.
Water and Fire-resistant Safe
If you want to store your birth certificate and other essential documents somewhere that is not assessable to everyone, you might prefer a portable safe. These storage solutions protect the birth and death records from any damages caused due to heat, moisture, and dirt.
Along with the documents, a safe lets you store USB drives, jewelry, and other smaller items you want to keep secure. These safes are resistant to fire and water so they keep the documents intact even during natural calamities.
Storing your birth certificate in a safe provides the following benefits:
- Protection against floods, fires, and thefts.
- Ample space to organize the birth certificates without folding them. You can also store a credit or debit card or passport in the safe.
- Portability – you can travel with your essential documents in a small safe and ensure that they are secure when you are away from home.
Three-ring Binder with Plastic Sleeves
Binders are easy to include in grab-on bags and are perfect for keeping your birth certificate and other documents handy. These binders are lightweight compared to safes while offering good protection for the documents.
The plastic sleeves inside the binders help keep the birth certificate held up properly in place so that you have enough space and refrain from folding it. The plastic sleeve keeps the edges intact and protects the birth certificate from damage.
A binder is a good choice for storing your birth certificate because:
- It is portable.
- Suitable for organizing your documents.
- It can be combined with other safety solutions such as safes.
- The pockets are see-through, so you don’t need to take the certificate out in order to read it.
Safety Deposit Box
If you are worried about your birth certificate being kept at home, you can trust a safety deposit box. You likely need to pay monthly rent to use a deposit box, but the protection offered is worth every dollar. You can go to the bank during operating hours and access your documents whenever you need them.
Storing your birth certificate in a safety box is a good idea because:
- It’s offsite so you don’t need to worry about your home’s security.
- Plenty of space to store other documents and valuables.
Secure Cloud Storage
If you want to have your birth certificate with you round the clock, you can keep it in digital storage. There are several user-friendly apps available that let you store important documents just by scanning them.
Keeping an e-copy of your birth certificate is useful for the following:
- You can access it whenever you need.
- Cloud storage is a secure platform to store your birth certificate, as it offers protection against any kind of damage.
4. Create a Perfect Storage Environment
Once you have decided where you’ll store your birth certificate and other documents, you can create a perfect storage environment by following these steps:
Clean the Safe or other Storage Area
If you want to store your birth records in a safe or another area, you will first need to thoroughly clean the inside. Elements such as dirt and dust can damage the certificate and may make it unfit for use.
Ensure It is Not Susceptible to Major Temperature and Humidity Fluctuations
Sudden changes in temperature and humidity can damage the birth certificate or may affect its longevity.
Place Silica Gel Packets to Eliminate Moisture
Keeping a few silica gel packets inside the safe help absorb the moisture. Scatter a few sachets inside the storage area, and then keep the folder containing your birth certificate safely inside.
Check the Stored Birth Certificate at Regular Intervals
Moisture and humidity can build up in an enclosed area, so you should check them at regular intervals. Inspect the documents to ensure there are no signs of damage.
What to Do If Your Birth Certificate Is Damaged
Not preserving and storing a birth certificate properly can damage it. If your birth certificate is damaged, you can order a new copy of a birth certificate from Texas’s Vital Records Office. Here’s how you can order a replacement or new birth certificate in Texas:
Visit the Office
You can visit Texas Vital Records, Department of State Health Services, to place an order for a birth record. You can order it for yourself or for any of your immediate family members. It is critical to bring your photo ID and other essential documents when ordering a birth certificate.
The State Office has records from 1903 onward, so you can even order the birth certificates of your grandparents for genealogy purposes.
You can order a replacement birth certificate from a reliable third-party website. It is very easy. You just fill out the online forms, upload all the required documents, make the payment, and place the order.
Order By Mail
You can also order a birth certificate by mail request. Download, print, and fill out all the required application forms and sign them in front of a notary. Get a notary seal and mail the documents and payment to the state vital’s office of vital records. They will mail you your birth certificate.
Your newly-printed birth certificate may take a few weeks to reach you, and if you live outside Texas, it may take even more time.
Order a Replacement With TX-DPS Records
The most convenient method to order your birth certificate in Texas is through TX-DPS Records. All you need to do is fill out the form on our website, make the payment, complete the notary process and wait for your birth certificate to be delivered to your address.
Why Order a Birth Certificate From TX-DPS Records?
Experts Handle Your Case
At TX-DPS Records, we have a team of experts that handle all applications carefully. Our team submits your application to the state vital’s office, so you don’t have to stress about the verification process or anything else.
Order certified long-form Type of Birth Certificate
There are three types of birth certificates standard size, full size (long form), and heirloom birth certificate. Each type has unique characteristics and is used for different purposes.
If you don’t know what type of birth certificate you need, it is best to get the certified long-form version. It works for all situations, such as applying for a marriage certificate or driver’s license, registering your kids for school sports, immigration issues, and more.
We Offer Notary Services as Well
Sometimes, ordering a birth certificate replacement requires a notary seal. At TX-DPS Records, we offer notary services to make sure your application complies with the guidelines of the state’s vital records department.
Get It Delivered to Your Doorstep
Whether you live in Texas, in any other state of the U.S., or outside the country, you can get your birth certificate delivered to your doorstep. There are no hidden charges, and you can quickly make one payment for the entire process.
Less Processing Time
The processing time for ordering a birth certificate in Texas varies depending on the method you choose. If you choose to mail, it can even take up to 2 weeks for your application to get processed. With TX-DPS Records, the expedited processing time is three days.
Get a Certified Copy
A certified birth certificate has specialized paper with the Texas seal inlayed. We help you order a certified copy of your birth certificate that can be used in lieu of the original certificate.
A certified copy is necessary when applying for programs like Transportation Safety Administration’s (TSA) PreCheck, which expedites security screenings at the airport for travelers.
We don’t charge an extra or hidden fee for a certified copy, and all you pay us is a single fee that includes ordering a birth certificate and getting it delivered.
Track Your Shipment
We provide a tracking number for all birth certificates and vital records that we ship. You can track your shipment from the comfort of your home to know when it will be delivered to your preferred address.
Who Can Order a Birth Certificate in Texas? What Are the Requirements?
Anyone can order a birth certificate in Texas whether or not they are currently a resident of the state. You can order a birth certificate for yourself or for any of your immediate family members, including your children, siblings, parents, grandparents, or spouse.
It is easy to order a birth certificate online with TX-DPS Records and get it delivered to your doorstep. To order your birth certificate, you need to:
Verify Your Identity Online by Providing Your:
- ID number or state-issued driver’s license number
- Relationship to the individual listed on the record (not required if you want to order it for yourself)
Provide the Following Required Information:
- First and last name of the individual listed on the official record.
- Individual’s date of birth.
- City and county where the birth occurred.
- The first and last names of the father and the first and maiden names of the mother as mentioned on the official record.
How Many Days Should I Wait to Get My Replacement Birth Certificate in Texas?
When requested through a non-expedited service, such as mail, it may take around 20–25 business days for your birth certificate application to process. Non-expedited mail-in requests can take up to 6–8 weeks to be processed and delivered.
Walk-ins to the vital records office are typically processed the same day they are submitted. However, the long queues and formalities can be challenging to deal with and may take up a lot of your time.
If you want your birth certificate to be delivered at the earliest opportunity, you can order it with TX-DPS Records. With us, your birth certificate application gets processed within three days, and you can expect faster delivery than ordering the certificate using other methods. If you would like your Texas birth certificate even faster, you can expedite delivery for an additional fee.
TX-DPS Records: For All Your Birth Certificate Needs!
Whether you want a birth certificate replacement copy for yourself or any of your immediate family members, you can order it quickly with TX-DPS Records.
We take pride in being one of the fastest birth certificate delivery services in Texas. You can trust us to get your vital records delivered safely and in a timely manner.