How do I find my grandmother’s birth certificate if she was born in the USA?

Okay, so she was adopted and hardly told us zip before she died in . I know the state she was born in (Michigan), her full name including maiden name and her birthday. We are trying to find out more about our family so any help would be appreciated! 🙂


Thank you to everyone that’s given me information. If anyone else knows of something different, please post it as I will have to e-mail all of this to my aunt who’s in charge of finding out these things.

By the way, visiting Michigan is out as I live in Southern California and can’t afford the trip. 🙁

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  • Quite a bit simpler than one may think. There are three different avenues that can be taken to obtain a certified copy of birth certificate in Michigan. You can use the online options, mail in options, or you could go to the Michigan Department of Community Health in Lansing to retrieve replacement birth certificate. Either way you choose can be fast, easy and effective if you were born in the state of Michigan.

    VitalChek is the only authorized online source for you to obtain a certified state of Michigan copy of your birth certificate. Orders processed via VitalChek are considered rush orders. Processing time for rush orders is – days for overnight UPS service and two weeks for regular service. There is an additional $ rush fee for online orders plus VitalChek’s $. processing fee.

    If you would rather get replacement birth certificate via snail mail (United States Postal Service), you will need a copy of a valid state, government or student ID. This way is less expensive but a lot slower. Orders for replacement birth certificates are processed within four to six weeks from the date of receipt of requests for regular requests and three to four weeks for rush orders. Requests for mailed copies of certified Michigan birth certificates must be sent to Michigan Department of Community Health, Vital Records Office at Townsend Street, Capitol View Bldg, rd Floor, Lansing MI .

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    The quickest, safest, least expensive and most effective way to get a replacement birth certificate in Michigan is to visit the Michigan Department of Community Health in Lansing. You can get same day service if you report to the office before : pm, Monday through Friday, except on holidays. The office is opened from : am to : pm.The state of Michigan gives you the options of convenience, speed, safety and effectiveness in obtaining a replacement birth certificate if you need to request one.

    Good luck!hope this helped.


  • You start here,,–_…

    and fight your way through a web site designed by a civil servant.

    If that link doesn’t work, which seems likely to me, start here

    and fight your way through a web site designed by a civil servant.

    Your parent may have to do it for you, and will have to have some sort of proof of his/her relation to your grandmother. Records under years old are restricted. You have to order by mail.

    After you open the PDF you find it is $, plus $ for every year on each side of the one you said it was that you want them to search. The form has a box for adoptions, so there is some hope you’ll find her biological parents.

    If you wanted it instantly for free from a web site, you are out of luck.

    When I Googled “Michigan Birth records” I saw a couple of companies that claim to be able to send you a cert for less than $. I would not trust them, but you may have more faith than I do.

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  • You received some good information. Please choose one of them as Best.

    Clarification: Are you trying to research information on your grandmother’s adoptive parents, the only family she knew? If so, if she had a Social Security Number (SSN), then she applied for it at some time when she was much younger. You can order (and pay for) a copy of her SSN application, which should have the names of her parents (the people who adopted her.) You can find out what her SSN was by using the free web site for the Social Security Death Index:


    Once you have her SSN, you can order a photocopy of her SSN application. This is the link to the form (PDF document) to print off, fill out, and send by US mail with a check or money order:


    Or, are you hoping to find out about her biological parents and biological ancestors? If you are, that is a legal issue because when she was adopted the adoption records in Michigan may have been sealed, meaning that information could never be made public. You can learn a bit about adoption laws and obtaining adoption records here:


    This is the link to the Michigan Dept. of Human Services and links regarding adoption records:


    It may not be possible to find the names and information on your grandmother’s birth parents.

    In my personal opinion, your grandmother’s adoptive parents and all their ancestors were her real family. Her birth parents provided her genetic make up, but not the love, nurturing, education, and extended family members that her adopting parents gave her (and much more.) Example: One of my cousins was adopted. She is still my cousin (and everyone’s favorite relative in our family, I might add.) To her, we are all her relatives and her adopting parents were her parents. She counts her parents ancestors as hers, because they are. Family is far more than just shared DNA/genes.

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    Best wishes

    Source(s): Professional genealogist + Reference/information librarian

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