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Fetal Death v. Stillbirth Certificate I&E's Mama Due December 23; 1 child; 1 angel baby; Greensboro, NC, United States 6067 posts
15th May '12

Since Eden was stillborn and never legally lived nor died, I received no kind of paperwork or certificate (like a birth or death certificate.) The only thing I really have is her certificate of cremation. I've done some researching, and NC does offer two different kind of certificates for this situation- a fetal death certificate and a birth resulting in stillbirth certificate. What's the difference? I would think it would technically be both, since she died in utero and was born still.



Also, I have the option of getting either the official copy (for legal purposes) or the unofficial copy. I doubt I'll ever need it for legal purposes, but should I just go ahead and get the official one?

Mother-Goose 17 kids; Springfield, Massachusetts 11164 posts
15th May '12
Quoting mommytoisaiah(+eden):" Since Eden was stillborn and never legally lived nor died, I received no kind of paperwork or certificate ... [snip!] ... or the unofficial copy. I doubt I'll ever need it for legal purposes, but should I just go ahead and get the official one?"


I would! When I lost my son at 17 weeks they gave me a "Certificate of Life" it wasnt for legal purposes it was kind of just something the hospital did for me..They put his footprints on it and gave me a hand painted box full of things like the lil outfit he wore etc.

Team PINK 2 kids; Nova Scotia 540 posts
15th May '12
Quoting mommytoisaiah(+eden):" Since Eden was stillborn and never legally lived nor died, I received no kind of paperwork or certificate ... [snip!] ... or the unofficial copy. I doubt I'll ever need it for legal purposes, but should I just go ahead and get the official one?"

I think one is for a baby that was already a stillborn and had to be born because of being a stillborn and the other is a labor that the baby was fine at first but came out stillborn by the time they came out?
I don't know that's just my thoughts...
but yes if you don't need for legal purposes I'd just go ahead and get the official one.

I&E's Mama Due December 23; 1 child; 1 angel baby; Greensboro, NC, United States 6067 posts
15th May '12
Quoting Mom2Journey:" I would! When I lost my son at 17 weeks they gave me a "Certificate of Life" it wasnt for legal purposes ... [snip!] ... did for me..They put his footprints on it and gave me a hand painted box full of things like the lil outfit he wore etc."


There's a mama who makes "soul certificates" for show. I'm thinking about getting one of those, but I do want to have the official documents just to have.

I&E's Mama Due December 23; 1 child; 1 angel baby; Greensboro, NC, United States 6067 posts
15th May '12
Quoting Team PINK
Mother-Goose 17 kids; Springfield, Massachusetts 11164 posts
15th May '12
Quoting mommytoisaiah(+eden):" There's a mama who makes "soul certificates" for show. I'm thinking about getting one of those, but I do want to have the official documents just to have."

Definitely understandable! Ill show u the one they gave me

Mother-Goose 17 kids; Springfield, Massachusetts 11164 posts
15th May '12

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Mur Due March 5; Kansas 1390 posts
15th May '12

I am unsure of the difference, but I received a certificate of still birth. I got the official one just in case I ever needed it. I doubt I will.

I&E's Mama Due December 23; 1 child; 1 angel baby; Greensboro, NC, United States 6067 posts
15th May '12
Quoting Mom2Journey:" "


That is beautiful! I might just make myself one of those to put on my "Eden table"



:)

I&E's Mama Due December 23; 1 child; 1 angel baby; Greensboro, NC, United States 6067 posts
15th May '12
Quoting Mur:" I am unsure of the difference, but I received a certificate of still birth. I got the official one just in case I ever needed it. I doubt I will. "


I figure I might as well get the official one, since there's not an additional cost or anything.

Mother-Goose 17 kids; Springfield, Massachusetts 11164 posts
15th May '12
Quoting mommytoisaiah(+eden):" That is beautiful! I might just make myself one of those to put on my "Eden table" :)"

:) Thank you mama!

I&E's Mama Due December 23; 1 child; 1 angel baby; Greensboro, NC, United States 6067 posts
15th May '12
Quoting Mom2Journey:" :) Thank you mama!"


How far along were you when he was born?

Mother-Goose 17 kids; Springfield, Massachusetts 11164 posts
15th May '12
Quoting mommytoisaiah(+eden):" How far along were you when he was born?"


17 weeks !

Diana@IRIS Faribault, Minnesota 3 posts
28th May '12

NC does offer two different kind of certificates for this situation- a fetal death certificate and a birth resulting in stillbirth certificate. What's the difference? I would think it would technically be both, since she died in utero and was born still.



Also, I have the option of getting either the official copy (for legal purposes) or the unofficial copy. I doubt I'll ever need it for legal purposes, but should I just go ahead and get the official one?



I run an infant loss organization call Infants Remembered In Silence, Inc. (IRIS) based in Minnesota. The certificates you are talking about are wonder certificates to have! It is my understanding that these certificates are available in most state and only to infants that are stillborn by definition. Most states see the stillbirth as the death of a child before birth and 20 gestational weeks or more. Before 20 gestational weeks the child would be considered miscarried. I disagree with the definition.
There are 2 types of Certificates. In Minnesota they are called a "Fetal Death Report" and a "Certificate of Birth Resulting in Stillbirth".
A Fetal Death Report is obtained at your local department of record (Recorders office) at the courthouse or other government building. There is a fee. This paper is in most cases just a piece of paper, computer generated, and has no legal seal or marks. (I felt rather ripped off when I got mine.) But you will most likely need it to get the Certificate of Birth Resulting in Stillbirth.
The Certificate of Birth Resulting in Stillbirth is a legal document. It look just like a regular birth certificate except the title is different. Mine is on MN State paper, has a registration number, state seal, etc. It is priceless to me.
In most states you Can Not get either certificate until 30 days after the child death. This gives the state time to process the paper work. In MN you can go to the Recorders office and get the Fetal Death Report but the Certificate of Birth Resulting in Stillbirth can only be ordered through the Department of Health by snail mail. All documentation and fees must be mailed with the order form and it must be notarized.
In some state you may also need an Authenticated Medical Record this is a letter from your Doctor/Midwife. This record/letter must be on clinic/business letterhead and include the delivery location and state, date of delivery, child's gestational age (remember it must be at least 20 gestational weeks or more in most states), and the Doctors/Midwife signature.

All Certificates must be requested from the state where the child was born.
I would visit the website for Health Department of the state that your child was born in and search Stillbirth Certificate for the paperwork, etc.

I hope that was of help. If you would like more info please feel free to visit the IRIS website. www.irisRemembers.org or give us a call at the IRIS office (507) 334-4748.