Do you know where your birth certificate is? It’s a good idea to keep it safe with any other important personal documents like your marriage certificate if you are married, passports, educational qualifications and employment records. If you have lost or mislaid your birth certificate and haven’t bothered replacing it because you were not sure of its potential usefulness it may be time to get a replacement. Most countries provide a service where you can get a copy of your original birth certificate. It tends to take some time to get a replacement and you don’t want to be waiting to get a copy if you find you really need it.
The chances are that you will need a birth certificate and possibly a birth certificate translation if you are applying for a visa or citizenship in a country other than the one you were born in. The birth certificate translation will only be needed, of course, if the certificate is in a language different from the one in the country you are applying for a visa for.
Some people think that birth certificates are out dated and unnecessary these days, as the information on the certificate is also found on your passport. This is true up to a point, but in fact, most birth certificates actually have more information on them than that and in any case, you probably need a birth certificate just to get a passport!
Birth certificates also confirm your name when you were born (important if you have changed it since). It also shows when you were born, where you were born and who your parents were. It may also provide information about your parents, such as their jobs when you were born.
Birth certificates tend to be fairly simple documents and the information on them tends also to be well laid out and easy to read, but this is of no help if you have been asked to provide it by an official who cannot understand your language. In fact, even if the official handling your visa application, citizenship application or passport application can understand your language, there is most likely to be a rule that any documents that must be made available must also be translated into the language of the country you are applying to.
A birth certificate translation should be translated by a professional translator. This is mandatory in some countries, but advisable anywhere. For example, a birth certificate translation for Australian immigration purposes must be completed by an accredited translator, i.e. a translator who has been accredited with the national accreditation authority, NAATI. The situation in the United States is slightly different as it is not essential to have a birth certificate translated by a certified translator but it cannot be done by the owner of the certificate or his or her spouse or partner. The birth certificate translation may also need to be certified by the translator to show that it is a genuine translation of the original and for this reason alone it make sense to use a professional translator to handle it and any other translations you need done at the same time
When you were born a birth certificate would have been provided to document your arrival in this world. It’s a legal document and you will find as you get older you will need to present your birth certificate as a form of identity to confirm your date of birth. If you don’t know where it is you may be able to use your passport instead, as this is a legal document too.
The need for a birth certificate translation if you work overseas
If you wish to go overseas and work in a country whose national language is not the same as your own you may be asked to provide translations of key documents to confirm who you are. A birth certificate translation may be needed if you wish to get a tax number or sign up to health and pension scheme while you are working overseas. Even if many people speak your language in the country you intend to work in it doesn’t mean they will easily understand the detail in a birth certificate, especially if the layout and formatting are different from their own.
A birth certificate translation is required if you wish to work in the United States
If you have applied for a job in the United States and you have been selected to take up the position, there are other hurdles to leap over before you can finally touch down on the country’s shores. You will have to fill in a pile of forms, some online, while others have to be sent in their paper form with your signature. If you have any documents that have not been written in English you will have to get a certified translation of the document before your application will be considered.
The very first document is the birth certificate translation. This translation will need to be done by an experienced translator who has a thorough understanding of the language used in birth certificates. The way a birth certificate is presented varies between countries, even between countries who share the same language like the U.S. and Britain. So it’s not good enough to choose a translator who understands a pair languages well you will need to go one step further and find one that understands the language of birth certificates and has plenty of experience of birth certificate translation that are presented in the same way as yours.
Birth certificate translation to get a driver’s license
When the time has come to get your driver’s license for the first time, you will need your birth certificate translation to prove who you are and when you were born. This is if you were born outside of the country that allows you to have a driver’s license and your birth certificate is written in a language that your host country doesn’t speak. Unless you have your own passport this is the only unique document that can identify you.
You may think that your birth certificate can be replaced if lost. Even though this can be done it’s a slow process so it’s a good idea to keep it in a safe place along with your birth certificate translation for the day when you will really need it.