Tenn. Comp. R. & Regs. 1200-07-01-.10 - AMENDMENT OF VITAL RECORDS

(1) Amendment of Minor Errors on Certificates During the First Year.
(a) Amendment of obvious errors, transposition of letters in words of common knowledge, or the addition of omitted information may be made by the State Registrar within the first year after the date of the event either upon his own observation or query or upon request of the person defined in 1200-07-01-.10(3). When such additions or minor amendments are made by the State Registrar, a notation as to the source of the information together with the date the change was made shall be maintained in such a way as not to become a part of any certification issued. The certificate is not to be marked "Amended".
(b) The State Registrar may at his discretion accept an affidavit only to correct inaccurate information recorded on a certificate within the first year after the date of the event. The affidavit must be signed and sworn to by the individual, institutional representative, clerk or funeral director who originally provided the information for the certificate or prepared the certificate. The State Registrar may require supporting documentation to amend the certificate. The certificate will be marked "Amended".
(2) All Other Amendments.
(a) Unless otherwise provided in these rules or by statute, all other amendments to vital records shall be supported by:
1. An affidavit signed by one of the persons defined in 1200-07-01-.10(3) setting forth the information to identify the certificate, the incorrect data as it is listed on the certificate, and the correct data as it should appear; and
2. One or more items of documentary evidence which support the alleged facts and which were created at least five years prior to the date of the application for amendment or within seven years of the date of the event, i.e., birth, death, marriage or divorce related to the record.
3. The date of birth on a birth certificate cannot be changed to a date which is after the date of filing. The date of birth can be corrected by an affidavit required in (2)(a)(1) and either of the following:
(i) One item of documentary evidence which was created before the registrant's tenth birthday which supports the correct date of birth, or
(ii) A transcript of the Federal Census which next followed the registrant's birth to establish the year of birth and a document which was made prior to the registrant's twenty-first birthday which supports the correct date of birth, or
(iii) To amend only a day of birth (with month and year to remain as originally recorded) documentary evidence established before the registrant's twenty-first birthday that supports the correct date of birth.
4. To amend the records for births that occurred more than seventy years prior to the application, the State Registrar may at his discretion require documentary evidence only. The documents must be at least five years old at the time of amendment.
5. No item on a certificate may be amended by an order of a court of competent jurisdiction except in accordance with the Vital Records Act of 1977 and regulations adopted by the department. A certified copy of the order must be submitted to the State Registrar.
6. An item that was established by court order on a certificate can only be amended by an order of a court of competent jurisdiction, preferably the court which granted the original decree. A certified copy of the order signed by the clerk of the court must be submitted to the State Registrar.
7. A legal change of name order from a court of competent jurisdiction is required to change the name as shown on the certificate, unless the registrant presents documentary evidence that the name was incorrectly recorded at the time of registration of birth. In order to prove incorrect recording, the documentary evidence should be the oldest document available, preferably a hospital birth worksheet or other record created very soon after birth, that proves the correct name.
(b) The State Registrar shall evaluate the evidence submitted in support of any amendment and, when he finds reason to doubt its validity or adequacy, he may reject the amendment and in writing shall advise the applicant of the reasons for this action.
(3) Who May Apply.
(a) To amend a birth certificate, application may be made by one of the parents named on the birth certificate, the guardian, the registrant (if 18 years of age or older), or the individual or institution responsible for filing the certificate.
(b) To amend a death certificate, application may be made by the next of kin, the informant listed on the death certificate, or the funeral director or person acting as such who submitted the death certificate. Applications to amend the date of death or the medical certification of cause of death shall be made by the physician who signed the medical certification or the medical examiner.
(c) Applications for amendment of a certificate of marriage shall be made jointly by both parties to the marriage or by the survivor. In the event the marriage to which the application relates was terminated by divorce or annulment on or before the date of application for amendment, the applicant may request amendment only of those items on the certificate of marriage which relate to the applicant.
(d) Applicants for amendment of matters contained in a certificate of divorce or annulment which are not part of the decree may be made by either party to the marriage so terminated. Applications for amendment of matters contained in a certificate of divorce or annulment which are part of the decree may only be made by the court which ordered the divorce or annulment upon which the report was made.
(4) Amendment of Registrant's Given Name on Birth Certificates Within the First Year.
(a) Until the registrant's first birthday, given names may be amended upon receipt of an affidavit signed by the parent(s) named on the certificate or the guardian, person, or agency having legal custody of the registrant.
(b) After one year from the date of birth, the provisions of Rule 1200-07-01-.10(2) must be followed to amend a given name, if the name was entered incorrectly on the birth certificate. A legal change of name order must be submitted from a court of competent jurisdiction to change a given name after one year and the order must be certified.
(5) Addition of Given Name.
(a) Given names, for a child whose birth was recorded without a given name, may be added to the certificate upon affidavit of the parent(s) named on the certificate or the guardian, person, or agency having legal custody of the registrant.
(b) If a birth was recorded without a given name and the registrant is age 18 years or older, he may sign the affidavit to add given names only when supported by documentary evidence at least five years old which establishes the name.
(6) Addition of Father's Name to Birth Certificate.
(a) A birth certificate may be amended to show the father's name and personal information in a case in which the parents were married at the time of their child's birth, if the father's name was omitted from the birth certificate or another man was shown as the father on the birth certificate.
1. If another man is listed on the birth certificate as the father, a certified copy of a court order specifically refuting the man listed as father must be submitted to the State Registrar before the certificate can be amended to show the correct information. The original entries concerning the father will be blocked. If the child's surname is to be changed, the original entry will be blocked.
2. The father's name and personal information may be added, if those items on the original certificate are blank, upon submission of the following to the State Registrar:
(i) An affidavit of both natural parents attesting to the fact that the man is the natural father and stating the surname to be given to the child, and
(ii) A certified copy of the marriage certificate of the father and mother showing that the marriage occurred before the child's birth, or information for locating the marriage certificate if the certificate is filed in the Division of Vital Records.
(iii) The State Registrar shall evaluate the evidence and affidavits submitted in support of this amendment, and, when he finds reason to doubt its validity or adequacy, he may reject the amendment and shall advise the applicant in writing of the reasons for this action.
(iv) In all cases the fact of amendment will be noted on the certificate and on all certified copies issued.
(b) In cases in which the mother was not married at the time of the child's birth and no information about the father is shown on the child's birth certificate, the father's name and personal information may be entered on the birth certificate, if prior to the child's nineteenth birthday both natural parents submit a voluntary acknowledgment of paternity form attesting to the fact that the man is the natural father and stating the surname to be given to the child.
1. If the parents elect to change the child's surname, the original surname will be blocked.
2. The record will be marked as amended, but certified copies will not bear the amendment notation.
(7) Removal of Father's Name and Personal Information. The originally shown father's name and personal data may be removed from a birth certificate only upon receipt of either
(a) A properly completed Rescission of Voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity received by the State Registrar within 60 days of the date on which the Voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity was completed, or
(b) A certified copy of an order from a court of competent jurisdiction which determines that the named man is not the father.
(8) If a Rescission of Voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity is accepted to make the amendment, the child's surname will be changed to the mother's legal surname at the time of birth. If a court order to remove the father is received, the child's name will be changed only if so authorized by the court.
(9) Medical Items. All items in the medical certification or of a medical nature may be amended only upon receipt of an affidavit from those persons responsible for the completion of such items or the medical examiner. The State Registrar may require documentary evidence to substantiate the requested amendment.
(10) Amendment of the Same Item More than Once. Once an amendment of an item is made on a vital record, that item shall not be amended again, except upon receipt of an order from a court of competent jurisdiction, and the order must be certified.
(11) Methods of Amending Certificates.
(a) Certificates of birth, death, marriage, and divorce or annulment may be amended by the State Registrar in the following manner upon receipt of the required documentation:
1. Completing the item in any case where the item was left blank on the existing certificate or
2. Drawing a single line through the item to be amended and inserting the correct data immediately above or to the side thereof. The line drawn through the original entry must not obliterate such entry. The original entry will be blocked out only if the court so orders or blocking is required by statute.
(b) In all cases, there shall be inserted on or filed with the certificate a statement identifying the affidavit and documentary evidence used as proof of the correct facts and the date the amendment was made. As required by statute or rule, the certificate shall be marked "Amended".
(12) Old Records That Will Not Be Amended. When one hundred years have elapsed after the date of birth or fifty years have elapsed after the date of death, marriage or divorce, the record of the event will not be amended.

Notes

Tenn. Comp. R. & Regs. 1200-07-01-.10
Original rule filed June 7, 1974. Repeal and new rule filed January 18, 1978; effective February 17, 1978. Amendment filed March 27, 1989; effective May 11, 1989. Amendment filed August 12, 1999; effective October 26, 1999. Amendments filed March 24, 2022; effective 6/22/2022.

Authority: T.C.A. §§ 4-5-202, 24-7-113, 68-3-101, 68-3-102, 68-3-103, 68-3-202, 68-3-203, 68-3-301, 68-3-302, 68-3-303, 68-3-304, 68-3-305, 68-3-308, 68-3-309, 68-3-310, 68-3-311, 68-3-312, 68-3-401, 68-3-402, 68-3-501, and 68-3-502.

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