Birth records are confidential for 75 years and death records 25 years; therefore, issuance is restricted to qualified applicants. Please attach a photocopy of ID to application. Failure to provide the purpose in obtaining the record and relationship to the applicant in the request, when the applicant is not the person named on the record, will result in the application being rejected or delayed in processing.
Amendment of a Birth and/or Death Certificate
An amended certificate may be filed to complete or correct a record that is incomplete or proved by satisfactory evidence to be inaccurate. The amendment must be in a form proscribed by the department. The amendment shall be attached to and become a part of the legal record of the birth, death or fetal death if the amendment is accepted for filing. The fee to file an amendment is $15.00. The additional fee for a certified copy of the updated birth record is $22, and death record is $21. Fees are paid directly to the State Vital Statistics Office at P.O. box 12040, Austin, Texas, 78711-2040. Further information can be obtained online directly from the Texas Department of Health Services web site.
Birth/Death Certificate Outside of Dallas County, but in Texas
The City of Dallas issues Birth Abstract certificates for births in Texas, but outside of the City of Dallas city limits. These documents are issued via remote access directly from the State of Texas, Vital Statistics Unit in Austin, Texas. The Birth Abstract certificates are legal documents and can be used for the same legal purposes as certificates generated from Dallas files for institutional or hospital births. Death certificates for deaths occurring outside the Dallas district are available in the district of which the death occurred or from the State of Texas Vital Statistics Office at P.O. Box 12040, Austin, Texas 78711-2040.
Birth or Death Certificate for a State Other than Texas
For out-of-state birth or death certificates, see the National Center for Health Statistics web site.
Apostille: Authenticating Birth or Death Certificates
If you are transferred by your employer to a foreign country, wanting to marry in a foreign country, or if you are adopting a child born in a foreign country, you may need to present your birth certificate to an official with the foreign country. If you are taking a deceased family member to a foreign country, or settling an estate of a deceased family member in a foreign country, the government officials with the foreign country will most likely require the death certificate of the decedent. Depending on the country and the circumstance, the documents may not be accepted by the foreign government officials unless they have been authenticated by the Secretary of State's Office. The 1961 Hague Convention established a pre-printed form for the purpose of authenticating documents for the countries that have joined the convention. This form is called an Apostille. If a document is authenticated with an Apostille , it will be recognized and will not need further certification as long as the foreign country requesting the document has joined the Hague Convention. Since October 15, 1981, the United States has been part of the Convention. Call 512-463-5705 for additional information. The mailing address is Texas Secretary of State, Statutory Document Section, P.O. Box 12887, 1019 Brazos, 2nd Floor, Austin, Texas 78701.
Death records older than 50 years and birth records older than 75 years are, with some exceptions, available to genealogists. Each document search must be paid for and sufficient information must be provided on the application for the document search. The Texas State Library has research material available specifically for genealogy research.