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HOW TO - Applying for a birth certificate

THE JAMAICAN BIRTH certificate is now printed on security paper, which can only be obtained from the Registrar General's Department (RGD), the only organisation in the island responsible for issuing birth, death, adoption and marriage certificates. To obtain a copy, persons need to apply to the Registrar General's Department.

The first step in obtaining a birth certificate is to complete a birth application form. This is available free of cost at any of the seven RGD regional offices in Mandeville, St. Ann's Bay, Montego Bay, Port Antonio, Savanna-la-Mar, Santa Cruz and Trevennion Park Road or the RGD's head office in Twickenham Park, St. Catherine. Forms are also available at major post offices or on the RGD's website at .


The form requires that you indicate the number of copies that you wish to obtain. You will also need to include your full and correct name on the form as well as the full and correct name of your parents. Please note that if your parents are married you also need to place your mother's maiden name along with her married name.

The date, place and district of birth are three important pieces of information that the form requires. Please ensure that this information is correct because incorrect information may result in delays in satisfying your application.

The birth entry number or the birth registration number is also important. The birth entry number is that number on the top, right hand corner of the birth certificate and on the certificate of registry (the pink slip). The entry number usually starts with two or more letters for instance DA 105. The D in this number refers to the parish where the birth took place while the A represents the main town where the birth occurred, number 105 is the sequence of births registered in that particular parish.

The entry number helps the RGD in locating your record quickly. All applications to the RGD must have the correct entry number. If you submit the incorrect entry number this could cause delays.

If you have misplaced your pink slip or your old birth certificate and you have no recollection of your entry number ­ do not panic. You can apply to the RGD for a search of the entry number. The search is first done electronically; if the electronic search is unsuccessful, a form search is then recommended. A form search is a manual search conducted by trained RGD personnel.

Once you have received the entry number you can now focus on completing the latter section of the form which requests information such as the name of the applicant (person applying for the certificate), the full and correct address of the applicant, a working telephone number and an email address. Please note that the RGD does not accept P.O box addresses as certificates are delivered to home addresses.

Once you have completed the form correctly, go ahead and submit it to the RGD.

For further information contact the RGD at 984-3041-5 or visit the RGD's website at or contact the Marketing and Planning Department at 984-1701.

December 8, 2005

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