If your birth certificate was stolen, there are some important steps you should take to make sure that you are protected from fraud and identity theft.
First, you’ll need to contact your local police to find out how to report the theft. If you have a police report stating that your records were stolen, it will be much easier to deal with your financial institutions and credit reporters.
Next, you should order a copy of your birth certificate as soon as possible, to replace the one that was stolen. However, this is much simpler than it sounds. It’s pretty simple to order a certified birth certificate copy online and have it mailed straight to your home.
Finally, whether your birth certificate was lost or stolen, you should take the proper precautions to make sure that you are protected. Even if it is simply lost, it may be discovered by someone with ill intentions. So, you should take extra care to ensure that your credit and identity are not affected.
Reporting a Stolen Birth Certificate
A birth certificate is an important vital record containing personal information that identity thieves could use to commit fraud. If the theft is reported, you’ll have a legitimate paper trail you can use as evidence if someone commits identity fraud against you. Your birth certificate can be used to prove both your identity and citizenship, so it is an important document to have.
You should start by filing a report of the theft with the police. This can be done at your local police station, or at the police station in the area where the theft occurred.
Second, you’ll need to report the theft to the Vital Records office in the state where your birth was registered. They may direct you to fill out a form or official report stating that your birth certificate was stolen.
Finally, you should you can use www.IdentityTheft.gov to report the theft. This is a website set up by both the U.S. Government and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). They offer a free, online service that allows you to easily report stolen identification documents (birth certificates, passports, social security cards, etc).
Protecting Yourself From Identity Theft
Unfortunately, credit fraud and identity theft are something you will need to watch out for if your birth certificate was lost or stolen. You are actually much more likely to become a victim of identity theft if your birth certificate is stolen, rather than another identification document, since your birth certificate contains the most amount of information and does not have a photo.
Just by having your birth certificate, thieves may be able to apply for new copies of your other IDs, as well. So, it’s important to report the theft before you start the process of replacing your birth certificate. Then, you should focus on monitoring your credit and watching for any sign of identity theft.
You can do this yourself, or use a credit monitoring service that will watch your credit and let you know immediately if someone tries to open a line of credit in your name. Either way you follow the steps listed below to protect your credit:
- Request your annual credit reports online (you can do this for free)
- Check your reports for unrecognized or strange activity
- Verify that everything on your account belongs to you
- If you do find an unknown account, you can contact the credit bureau and the financial institution that opened the account to report it
- Contact the credit reporting agencies to put a 90-day fraud alert on your credit reports (this will make it difficult to open an account in your name)
- Or, you can temporarily freeze your credit. No new accounts can be opened in your name while the freeze is active. You can cancel or pause it at any time, if you need to open a new account yourself.
How to get a new copy of your birth certificate
Applying for a certified copy of your birth certificate is incredibly simple. You can do it online in just a few minutes. All you have to do is fill out a short form with your basic information, submit the application and your identification documents, then your birth certificate copy will be mailed straight to your home.
You can also go in person to the Vital Records Office where your birth was registered, however, this is not an option for many people, since they no longer live near their birth state or county. Vital Records Offices frequently have long lines and wait times as well, and the application process to get a birth certificate replacement can be incredibly confusing.
Fortunately, by applying online, you can avoid the long lines at your local Vital Records Office, and you’ll get the added benefit of access to experts who can verify your information and make sure your application is correct. They will also provide you with specific instructions on documents you will need and how to submit your application to avoid delays or rejection. Just follow the steps below to get your birth certificate on its way.
- Fill out the simple online birth certificate application form (it only takes 5 minutes).
- Let our experts review your application, then print and sign the revised copy.
- Follow the customized instructions to submit your application and the correct IDs.
- Wait for your birth certificate copy to arrive in the mail after your application has been processed.