Birth records or certificates are documents pertaining to an individual's birth. They are originally used for taxation purposes and as proof of one's eligibility to join the military. But now they can be used to prove one's age, birth right, nationality and even one's right for inheritance. They are also requirements for entering schools, for obtaining a driver's license or passport, for voting or running for office, for marrying, for adoptions, and for opening a bank account.
Proofs of birth are stored with a government agency. This agency will be the one to issue a certified true copy of a person's birth certificate upon request. In the United States of America, although the U.S. National Center for Health Statistics recommends a standard form for the birth certificates, the states can create their own forms. Thus there is no uniformity as to appearance and content of birth certificates across the whole country.
Sealed birth records are considered closed upon adoption. A new birth certificate is issued with the adoptive parents as the parents of the adoptee. This is done to protect the adopted child against the humiliation of him/her being an illegitimate child.
Birth certificates can be a very good source of information for background checks. A background check is usually done when one is applying for a job. The employer needs to verify that what is written in the resume is true. A lot of information like real full name, birth date, birth place, and parents' names are available in that document.
Birth certificates are also used to trace family lineage. There are a number of ways to trace family lineage. One is through The Family History Library of Utah which is the largest genealogy library in the world, having at least three million rolls of microfilms and more than 1 million books of published material. Another way is through field research. One has to go out there and do interviews. The last way is via the internet. It is considered to be the most valuable research tool as there are sources of information not found in the Utah library but can be found online. Online search also provides an opportunity to meet other people who are looking for the same family lineage across the globe.
Procuring a birth certificate can be done in two ways: the traditional and online. The traditional way is to go to the local or state registrar where the record is located and transact it there. This can be time consuming and inconvenient especially if one has to travel a long distance to get to the registrar. The online procedure is a more convenient and time-saving means to get information about a person's birth details.
In making an online birth records search, the person's real name is important. But this can bring multiple results as there may be other people who have the same names. The more facts one has about a person, the more accurate the search results will be.