There are restrictions on who can apply for a birth certificate. Vital Statistics will issue a birth certificate to the person named on the certificate, a parent or legal guardian or the administrator of the person's estate. For more details please contact Vital Statistics.
To ensure the correct certificate format is obtained, please contact the organization that requires the birth certificate to determine if a short or long form is needed. Some common uses include school registration, passport, social insurance numbers and driver's licences.
Please note that for married women, birth certificates are issued in the maiden name.
The short form birth certificate contains the following information:
The long form birth certificate contains all the information of the short form birth certificate plus the parent's names and their birthplaces. The long form birth certificate contains the following information:
For more information about certificate costs, please visit Vital Statistics Fees.
You can apply in person at our office, by mail, or you can drop off an application at any N.S. Registry of Motor Vehicle office or Access Nova Scotia office to be processed through the mail.
You can download an application form to request a certificate from the following link:
If you apply by mail, the following payment options are available:
PLEASE DO NOT SEND CASH THROUGH THE MAIL
If you apply in person, the following payment options are available:
If you apply by fax, the following payment options are available:
After your application and the proper payment have been received by the Vital Statistics office in Halifax, the certificate will normally be processed within 10 business days (provided the birth has been registered, and no additional information is required), and sent to you by mail. Please allow additional days for postal delivery.
If the birth record contains any French characters or symbols on the registered names, please ensure they are clearly displayed on the birth certificate application form.
All certificate prices include a three-year search. A three-year search may be requested without purchasing a certificate (confirmation of event only) for the applicable fee please go to Vital Statistics Fees. Certificates are issued in accordance with information on file and cannot be returned for refund.