Privacy laws are fairly strict, and it will take a bit of work to request a Minnesota birth record even if you are entitled to do so.
All records are considered to be confidential, no matter how old they are and only those with legal need or personal relationship to the person on record can access them. If you are not a legal representative, you will have to be the child, grandchild, parent, grandparent or spouse of the person on the birth record. You can also access your own birth records. Documentation of your own identity and your relationship will have to be included with your records request.
The state began collecting Minnesota birth records in 1900 though it took until around 1915 to create a comprehensive set of data. You can request records from then until the present day, providing you meet the above requirements.
Requests are made to the Vital Records section of the state Department of Health. You can get the 3-page application form from their website (http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/chs/osr/certbirth1.pdf), and you will be sending all your information to the Minnesota Department of Health, Central Cashiering - Vital Records, PO Box 64499, St. Paul MN, 55164-0499 USA.
To identify the Minnesota birth record you are looking for, you will need the person's full name, sex, date of birth and parent's full names (the maiden name for the mother). You will also have to include the search fee for each record you are looking for. The cost is currently $26 USD for the initial search, and $19 for any additional copies of the same record. You can also request a non-certified copy for only $13.
You can pay these fees by check or money order (made out to the Minnesota Department of Health), or you can also include your credit card information to pay that way. Because they do accept credit cards, you can fax your entire application if you are paying this way.
Whether by fax or by mail, you will have between 4 and 6 weeks to wait before your request is processed. If they are unable to locate the record you have indicated, you will get a notice of "failure to find" but no refunds are issued for the search fees.
In order to complete your Minnesota birth record request, you have to get your signature notarized (even if the request is for your own certificate).
The Minnesota Historical Society has a searchable index online of birth records that go from pre-1900s to 1934 where you can look up any record you wish based on name and birth year (http://people.mnhs.org/bci/). The rest of their site has a lot of helpful information on researching history in Minnesota.
You can also do further research for older Minnesota birth records through individual counties, with some having birth records back to 1864. Redwood county is one with very old records, for example. The restrictions on acquiring them will still apply, even when requested from county offices.
How to request Minnesota birth certificates:
The first step to making a request for Minnesota birth records by mail is to fill out a Minnesota Birth Certificate application. An application should be filled out for each separate record requested.
Provide the additional documentation required for your application type. Your application will need to be notarized.
Using the fee schedule listed on the application, include a check or money order for the appropriate fee. Fees for records start at $16, and there is a $30 fine on all returned checks.
If you have more questions about how to access Minnesota birth records, you can contact the Department of Health below:
Minnesota Department of Health
Minnesota Department of Health
Attention: Office of the State Registrar/Birth Certificates
P.O. Box 64499
St. Paul, Minnesota 55164-0499
How You Can Access Minnesota Birth Records
The Minnesota Department of Health handles all requests for Minnesota birth records. If you need a copy of your record, then the easiest way to make your request is to send in an application to the Department of Health.
Available Ordering Methods
There are two ways that you can order Minnesota birth records. The first is to complete an application and mail it in to the Department of Health. Alternatively, you can fax the completed application form to the Department of Health.
Confidential Birth Records
Many Minnesota birth records are considered confidential, including those of children born to unmarried parents and any others that were not marked as public information at birth. Subsequently, the only people authorized to access confidential birth records are the person listed on the record (who must be at least 16), the parents listed, a guardian who provides guardianship papers, and others who are able to demonstrate a tangible interest in the record.