Secondary Evidence of U.S. Citizenship
If you cannot present primary evidence of U.S. citizenship, you must submit secondary evidence of U.S. citizenship. Determine what form of secondary evidence is most appropriate for your situation based on the descriptions below.
Early Public Records
If you were born in the United States and cannot present primary evidence of U.S. citizenship, submit a combination of early public records as evidence of your U.S. citizenship. Early public records must be submitted with a Letter of No Record. Early public records should show your name, date of birth, place of birth, and preferably be created within the first five years of your life. Examples of early public records are:
- Baptismal certificate
- Hospital birth certificate
- Census record
- Early school record
- Family bible record
- Doctor's record of post-natal care
Early Public Records are not acceptable when presented alone.
Delayed Birth Certificate
If you were born in the United States and cannot present primary evidence of U.S. citizenship because your U.S. Birth Certificate was not filed within the first year of your birth, you may submit a Delayed U.S. Birth Certificate. A Delayed U.S. Birth Certificate filed more than one year after your birth may be acceptable if:
- It lists the documentation used to create it (preferably early public records), and
- It is signed by the birth attendant or lists an affidavit signed by the parents.
If your Delayed U.S. Birth Certificate does not include these items, it should be submitted together with Early Public Records.
Letter of No Record
If you were born in the United States and cannot present primary evidence of U.S. citizenship because you do not have a previous U.S. passport or a certified U.S. birth certificate of any kind, you must present a state-issued Letter of No Record showing:
- Your name,
- Your date of birth,
- The years for which a birth record was searched, and
- Acknowledgement that no birth certificate was found on file.
A Letter of No Record must be submitted together with Early Public Records.
Form DS-10: Birth Affidavit
- Must be notarized,
- Must be submitted in person with Form DS-11,
- Must be submitted together with early public records,
- Must be completed by an affiant who has personal knowledge of birth in the U.S.,
- Must state briefly how the affiant's knowledge was acquired, and
- Should be completed by an older blood relative.
NOTE: If no older blood relative is available, it may be completed by the attending physician or any other person who has personal knowledge of your birth.
Foreign Birth Documents + Parent(s) Citizenship Evidence
If you claim citizenship through birth abroad to U.S. citizen parent(s), but cannot submit a Consular Report of Birth Abroad or Certification of Birth, you must submit all of the following:
- Your foreign birth certificate (translated to English),
- Evidence of citizenship of your U.S. citizen parent,
- Your parents' marriage certificate, and
- A statement of your U.S. citizen parent detailing all periods and places of residence or physical presence in the United States and abroad before your birth
The following will not be accepted as secondary evidence of U.S. citizenship:
- Voter registration card
- Army discharge paper
- Social Security Card