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Office of Vital Statistics
Office of Vital Statistics

Adding or Removing the Father - Frequently Asked Questions


  • Can I change or delete the Father's name on my (child's) birth certificate?

Yes.  But, your will need a court order that allows you to do that.   

  • The father of my child has passed away and I want to remove his name from the certificate, can I do that?

Yes.  But, you will be required to have a court order authorizing you to do so.   

  • The father of my child died before he could be added to the birth certificate.   How can I add his name to my child's certificate after his death?

The only way to do that is by requesting a court order to do so.  

  • How do I change the Father's Name on my (child's) birth certificate when there is already someone listed as the father?

If you have a court order allowing you to do so, submit a certified copy of the court order along with the Application to Amend a Birth Record - Adjudication of Facts of Parentage Form (VS21) and $23 fee to the State Registrar in Sacramento, CA and your request will be processed in accordance with their processing times.   Please click here to be redirected to the CDPH website to check processing times.

  • How can I add the Father's name to my child's Birth Certificate (when Father's name field is blank)?

You have few ways to do that:

1- By completing the Declaration of Paternity - You must comply with few requirements in order to do this process:  The person to be listed as "father", must be the biological father.    The mother must not be married to anyone else.   The father needs to be willing to be listed as such.    Keep in mind that Declaration of Paternity Process was created to facilitate those parents who are willing to add the father's name without the need to go through a long and lengthy court process.    Therefore, if the father is refusing to sign the Declaration of Paternity, the only way to establish paternity will be through a court process by performing a DNA test and obtaining a court order for adding the father's name to it.      Please contact any Family Court near to where you live for more detailed information on how to go about doing this process.   

2- By court order - You must obtain a court order authorizing you to add the father's name to the certificate.

3- By marriage - If the parents got married after the child's birth certificate was created and the father's name was not listed on it, you may choose just to amend the record by completing form VS-22 (Acknowledgement of Paternity) and submitting it along with a copy of the marriage license or certificate to the California Office of Vital Records in Sacramento, CA.


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