NJ Residents Born In Puerto Rico Will Have To Obtain New Birth Certificates

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STATE—Beginning July 1, 2010, New Jersey residents born in Puerto Rico will have to obtain a new certified copy of their birth certificate under a new law passed by the government of Puerto Rico.

The new law was based on collaboration with the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to address the fraudulent use of Puerto Rico-issued birth certificates to unlawfully obtain U.S. passports, Social Security benefits, and other federal services.

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New Jersey residents born in Puerto Rico need to contact the Office of Vital Statistics in Puerto Rico to obtain a new, certified copy of their birth certificate. Individuals should contact the government of Puerto Rico at http://www.salud.gov.pr or call 1-787-767-9120. For additional information, individuals can also contact www.prfaa.com/birthcertificates for information on how to obtain a copy of their certified birth certificate.

Joseph Komosinski, state registrar of vital records, stressed that only those individuals who need to obtain a certified copy of their birth certificate for immediate official business such as obtaining a passport need to request a new birth certificate right away.

“People who want to obtain a copy for their records are encouraged to apply at a later date,’’ said Komosinski.

The law that passed in Puerto Rico in December will invalidate all existing certified copies of birth certificates issued in Puerto Rico. As a result, individuals who do not obtain a new certified copy will be unable to apply for a passport or other federal or state programs.


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