California Birth Records Search

California’s Department of Public Health Vital Records collects, maintains and issues all California birth records. They have been retaining them since 1905.

Only you and the list of people below can request a copy of your specific birth record. Anyone else would need a court order or special legal authorization: your parents, grandparents, legal guardian, power of attorney/executor of your will, law enforcement agency, your children, siblings, spouse, domestic partner or your adoption agency.

When requesting a copy, you will need full name, date of birth, both parents names, along with the city and county of birth.

Types of California Birth Records

California offers only two types of birth certificates that you can request copies of:

Informational - the first is an informational copy that is not valid to establish identity and is used for informational purposes only.

Authorized/Certified Copy - the second type is a certified copy that is valid to use in all government agencies and other official business. A certified copy of your birth certificate is a legal document to establish your identity. You will need a notarized form of authorization with this request.

Both types may or may not include a social security number on them. California also offers amendment services to add or change a parent on the birth record due to adoption or other reasons, after issue.

California Population

California tops the charts with almost 40 million people, making it the largest state on the West coast. California also has the most diverse population and is the most populated state in the nation.

The majority of this vast populous lives three cities: Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Jose.

California is also the 3rd largest state with a population density of 251.3 per square mile. With an annual growth rate of 61%, it is the 21st fastest growing state in America. Due to immigration, California has a healthy natural growth rate as well.

40,811,326
State Population
1 birth every 65 seconds

1 death every 98 seconds

Population change from 2010-2016

Population by Gender

There are more women than men in California. The total population of California is estimated at 39,296,476 people with 19,522,943 male and 19,773,533 female. There are 250,590 more more women than men in the state, which is 50.32% of the total population.

The California Gender Ratio is 99 men to 100 women (99:100) or 0.99. State’s gender ratio is higher than the national average of 97 men to 100 women (97:100) or 0.97.

Gender ratio in 2016

99
Men
100
Women

Total population in 2016

19,522,943
Men
19,773,533
Women

Timeline of male/female population from 2010-2016

California Birth Statistics

The state's birth rate decreased to 12.30 births per 1,000 population in 2016 with 488,827 total births — the lowest in California history, and higher than the national birth rate - 11.95 births per 1000 women. The total number of births for 2016 was 488,827, 12.39% of the number of nationwide registered births.

State Birth Rate

Top 5 States with Lower/Higher Birth Rates than California

Top 5 states with a lower birth rate than California Top 5 states with a higher birth rate than California
Michigan - 11.30Alaska - 15.12
Nevada - 11.71South Dakota - 14.32
North Carolina - 12.09North Dakota - 15.04
West Virginia - 11.03Kansas - 13.05
Tennessee - 12.07Washington - 12.55

Top 5 Counties in California with the lowest/highest Birth Rate

Top 5 counties in California with the lowest birth rate Top 5 counties in California with the highest birth rate
Marin County - 8.64Imperial County - 16.25
San Luis Obispo County - 9.12Kern County - 15.52
Placer County - 9.81Tulare County - 15.52
Sonoma County - 9.86Fresno County - 15.44
Napa County - 9.89Merced County - 15.32

California Fertility Rate

In California the fertility rate based on historical data went from 66.50 to 62.14 from 2010-2016, and currently is lower than the crude fertility rate of the US - 60.63 births per 1000 women. The state reproductive age of the mother has seen an increase during the last 6 years, going from 28.21 to 29.40.

State fertility rate timeline with the average age of mother

Fertility Rate By County

The top reproductive counties of California are Imperial - 85.78, Kings - 78.97 and Kern - 76.91. For the fertility rates of the rest of the counties, please see the table below:

County Fertility rate
Tulare County75.26
Fresno County74.41
Merced County73.75
Madera County72.04
Monterey County72.04
Stanislaus County71.51
San Joaquin County69.28
San Bernardino County68.56
Shasta County66.5
Riverside County63.3
Sacramento County62.78
Solano County61.99
San Diego County61.88
San Mateo County60.3
Orange County59.44
Santa Clara County58.89
Santa Barbara County58.23
Marin County56.95
Los Angeles County56.64
Contra Costa County56.54
Placer County55.93
Alameda County54.71
El Dorado County54.7
Butte County54.56
Sonoma County53.98
Napa County53.66
Humboldt County52.65
Santa Cruz County48.8
San Luis Obispo County48.3
Yolo County45.17
San Francisco County44.43

State Average Birth Weight and LMP Gestational Age

Where to Obtain a California Birth Certificate

If you get your birth certificate through the Department of Public Health, processing time will be 6-7 weeks from the time of application. You may also visit a local county recorder office, which usually offers faster service.

You will have to pay a $25 fee for each copy requested. Your payment may be paid by check or money order, and it is non-refundable. Funds must come from a U.S. bank and checks must be made out to CDPH Vital Records. If the California birth record search comes up null, they will keep your money as a search fee. County recorder office fees may vary.

When requesting a certified copy, you will need a notarized sworn statement as well. If you fail to produce this document, you will not be able to get a copy of your birth record.

If you don’t wish to go through official California agency channels, you can order one online at VitalChek quickly and easily, but additional fees may apply.

California Department of Public Health

Cost of copy: $25.00
Organization: CA Department of Public Health - Vital Records
Address:MS: 5103; P.O. Box 997410, Sacramento, CA 95899-7410
Remarks: The State office has records since July 1905. For earlier records, contact the County Recorder in the county where the event occurred. A personal check or money order should be made payable to CDPH Vital Records. Please do not send cash. To verify current fees, the telephone number is (916) 445-2684. This will be a recorded message, with an option to talk to a customer service representative. Information on how to obtain certified copies is also available via the California Department of Public Health website. In order to obtain a Certified Copy you MUST complete the sworn statement included with the birth certificate application form, sign the statement under penalty of perjury and, your sworn statement must be notarized. If your request indicates that you want a Certified Copy but does not include a notarized statement sworn under penalty of perjury, the request will be rejected as incomplete and returned to you without being processed. If you request a Certified Informational Copy of the record, a notarized sworn statement is not required. Please refer to the CDPH website for further information about Informational Copies. Effective November 1, 2013, CDPH - Vital Records is no longer embossing certified copies of records.