Two months ago the DMV (located below) told me that the embossed, original document issued by the state of New York in 1964 that says Proof of American Citizenship on it in bold type was not acceptable to them as proof of my American citizenship.
They instructed me to ask the state of New York Department of Health (shown below) to issue me something that Utah would find acceptable. I specifically requested a “birth certificate”.
The date on the document they sent back indicates that it took them 5 weeks to generate the laser-printing on copy-proof paper. It then took them 12 more days to generate the form letter they sent with it.
What they sent is not a birth certificate, but instead a “Certified Transcript of Birth”. Interestingly, Utah will accept this, even though it is not what they told me to ask for.
But, when I received the document, I found that it had misspelled my father’s first name. I know … I know … Robert is one of those unusual names that people screw up quite a bit.
Of course, Utah says that I am free to submit the form with the incorrect name on it, and keep my fingers crossed that this never creates any documentation problems in the future. Yeah, right.
When I asked New York how to get the error fixed*†, I was told I had to ask for a long-form birth certificate. Apparently they are guaranteed error-free, although I wonder how they’d know since they made no mention of actually fixing the errors.
* I wonder about other small discrepancies: my father’s middle initial is used, but not his name, and there is no given middle name, maiden last name used as a middle name, or middle initial of either one given for my mother.
† I also find it disturbing that New York does not record the mother’s married name on the child’s birth certificate. If her name was legally changed 11 years before my birth, shouldn’t that be what’s on the birth certificate? I can think of 9 variations on my mother’s name that might have been put on the form, and they’ve chosen to use the one that is least likely to match up with other information for her.