2017 Georgia Code
Title 31 - Health
Chapter 10 - Vital Records
§ 31-10-23. Amendment of certificates or reports
- (a) Unless otherwise specified by law, a certificate or report registered under this chapter may be amended in accordance with this chapter and regulations adopted by the department to protect the integrity and accuracy of vital records. Such regulations shall specify the minimum evidence required for a change in any certificate or report. Amendments to birth certificates, death certificates, and application supplement-marriage reports shall be completed by the department and a copy mailed to the proper local custodian, if any. Amendments to applications for a marriage license or the license shall be completed by the judge of the probate court of the county in which the license was issued. An amendment to divorce reports shall be completed by the clerk of the superior court of the county in which the decree was granted.
- (b) A certificate or report that is amended under this Code section shall be marked "amended," except as otherwise provided in this Code section. The date of amendment and a summary description of the evidence submitted in support of the amendment shall be endorsed on or made a part of the record. The department shall prescribe by regulation the conditions under which additions or minor corrections may be made to certificates or records within one year after the date of the event without the certificate or record being marked "amended."
- (1) Upon receipt of a certified copy of an order to legitimate a child, or an affidavit signed by the natural parents whose marriage had legitimated a child, the director shall register a new birth certificate if paternity was not shown on the original certificate. Such certificate shall not be marked "amended."
- (2) If paternity was shown on the original certificate, the record can be changed only by an order from a court of competent jurisdiction or the Office of State Administrative Hearings to remove the name of the person shown on the certificate as the father and to add the name of the natural father and to show the child as the legitimate child of the person so named. The order must specify the name to be removed and the name to be added.
- (d) Upon receipt of a certified copy of an order from a superior court, probate court, or other court of competent jurisdiction changing the name of a person born in this state and upon request of such person or such person's parents, guardian, temporary guardian, or legal representative, the state registrar shall amend the certificate of birth to show the new name. When the names of the parent or parents and the child are changed, the state registrar may register a new certificate if requested by the parents, guardian, temporary guardian, or legal representative. Such new certificate shall be marked "amended."
- (e) Upon receipt of a certified copy of a court order indicating the sex of an individual born in this state has been changed by surgical procedure and that such individual's name has been changed, the certificate of birth of such individual shall be amended as prescribed by regulation.
- (f) An order from a superior court or probate court shall be required to change the year of birth shown on the original birth certificate by more than one year or to correct any item on a delayed birth certificate, or to remove the name of a father from a birth certificate on file. The person seeking such change, correction, or removal shall institute the proceeding by filing a petition with the appropriate court in the county of residence for an order changing the year of birth, correcting a delayed birth certificate, or removing the name of the father from a birth certificate on file. Such petition shall set forth the reasons therefor and shall be accompanied by all available documentary evidence. The court shall set a date for hearing the petition and shall give the state registrar at least ten days' notice of said hearing. The state registrar or the authorized representative thereof may appear and testify in the proceeding. If the court from the evidence presented finds that such change, correction, or removal should be made, the judge shall issue an order setting out the change to be made and the date of the court's action. The clerk of such court shall forward the petition and order to the state registrar not later than the tenth day of the calendar month following the month in which said order was entered. Such order shall be registered by the state registrar and the change so ordered shall be made.
- (g) When an applicant does not submit the minimum documentation required in the regulations for amending a vital record or when the state registrar has reasonable cause to question the validity or adequacy of the applicant's sworn statements or the documentary evidence and if the deficiencies are not corrected, the state registrar shall not amend the vital record and shall advise the applicant of the reason for this action and shall further advise the applicant of the right of judicial appeal.
- (h) When a certificate or report is amended under this Code section, the state registrar shall report the amendment to the proper local custodian and their record shall be amended accordingly.
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