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A guide to applying for a birth certificate in the UK

A birth certificate may be required for different purposes, from requiring a copy because the original has been mislaid or damaged, to requesting a copy of a birth certificate in the process of researching family history. For both purposes, there are a few ways in which certificates can be ordered. Hence, this article will provide a guide to applying for a birth certificate in the UK.

How to request a birth certificate

You can order a birth certificate in two main ways: either through the General Registry Office or as its abbreviated term, the GRO, or you can approach your Local Register Office if the birth was registered in your local area. If you are researching your family tree and require the birth certificate of an ancestor, some subscription websites provide a facility to order the certificate(s) through their website.
General Register Office If you are applying for a birth certificate from the General Register Office, then you will need to register your details and set up an online account through a few simple steps. This will allow you to check the status of your order and place future orders if you may require marriage or death certificates at a later date. The section below will outline the information that you need in order to request a copy of a birth certificate.
Local Register Office If the birth certificate that you are looking for was registered in your local area, then you can contact the Local Registrar's Office to request a copy. Sometimes, the prices at Local Register Offices can be a little cheaper or a little more expensive than purchasing a copy from the GRO UK website. Again, you will need to provide certain information in order for the employees of the General Registry Office or your Local Register Office to send you the correct certificate.

What information is required for a birth certificate

When ordering any BMD, or birth, marriage or death certificates, there are certain information that you will need to include when you order your certificate. This includes: - The year in which the birth was registered - The surname of the individual at birth - The first name of the individual at birth - The quarter in which the birth was registered - District name - Volume number - Page number The majority of this information will be found on the BMD indexes which are found on many family history websites, or on the free website Free BMD.

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