Who can be a guarantor

A guarantor can be a family member or someone else you know. However, they must:

  1. be a Canadian Citizen
  2. know you (the applicant) personally, for at least 2 years, and
  3. work in or be a member of an approved occupation or profession in Canada

Approved occupations

Your guarantor can be someone who currently serves or works as a:

  • mayor
    • notary public
  • signing officer of a bank, credit union or trust company
  • judge or justice of the peace
  • senior administrator or professor in a university
  • senior administrator in a community college or in a CEGEP in Quebec
  • member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario
  • Chief of a band recognized under the Indian Act
  • principal or vice-principal of a primary or secondary school
  • minister of religion authorized under provincial law to perform marriages
  • municipal clerk or treasurer who is a member of the Association of Municipal Managers, Clerks and Treasurers of Ontario
  • municipal or provincial police officer, an officer of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police or First Nations police officer and/or constables

Approved professions

Your guarantor can also be a practicing member in good standing, of one of the following provincially regulated professions:

  • lawyer
  • professional engineer
  • professional accountant
  • social worker or social service worker
  • teacher in a primary or secondary school
  • chiropractor, dentist, midwife, nurse, optometrist, pharmacist, physician, surgeon, psychologist or veterinarian

If you don’t have a guarantor

If you cannot provide a guarantor, it will take longer to process your application. Follow the steps below.

1. Write a letter of explanation

The letter of must include:

  • your name, mailing address and telephone number
  • the reason you are requesting a birth certificate(s)
  • the length of time you have lived:
    • in Canada, and
    • at your place of residence
  • how you attempted to find a qualified guarantor
  • why you were not able to find a guarantor, and
  • the date and your signature
  • application order number

2. Get a reference letter

Who can be a reference

The person who writes your reference letter can be either:

  • a Canadian citizen, who is a practicing member in good standing of one of the professions or occupations listed above, but who has known you for less than two years, or
  • a practicing member in good standing of one of the professions or occupations listed above, but not a Canadian citizen, who has known you personally for at least two years and can verify the same information about you as a guarantor would (for example, a lawyer in France)

The reference letter must include

  • your reference's name, address and telephone number
  • their relationship to you (for example, if they are your supervisor)
  • how long they have known you
  • your reference’s signature and the date, and
  • how to contact your reference (for example, telephone number)
  • the occupation your reference serves in or the contact information for the regulatory body that governs your reference’s profession
  • whether or not your reference is a Canadian citizen
  • a statement that your reference has knowledge that you are applying for a birth certificate and who the subject of the birth certificate is

3. Send your letters

Office of the Registrar General
189 Red River Road, PO Box 4600
Thunder Bay, Ontario
P7B 6L8

Proof of urgency

To qualify for an emergency or expedited service, the birth must be registered in Ontario and you must provide: 

Proof of urgency may include:

  • documentation of a medical emergency
  • a letter confirming new employment
  • a letter from a consulate, embassy confirming an appointment
  • travel reservations including airline tickets, reservations or travel itinerary
  • a letter confirming an appointment for an immigration hearing
  • a wedding invitation, where the applicant is a party to the marriage
  • a letter from a Registered Education Savings Plan dealer
  • other situations subject to review

You can upload your proof of urgency along with the completed certificate application form or existing file number, any supporting documentation or correspondence, and pay the fee (if applicable) online: 

This service is only available for urgent requests. 

If you already have an existing application, please include your file number instead of another certificate application in your submission.

Note: Do not include credit card information in your application form. Once you have completed your form, you will be directed to a payment page where you can submit your payment information and complete your request. 

If your request is not urgent, you may apply for a birth certificate through our online certificate application or submit your application by mail.  

Next steps

We will review your application and supporting documents. We may contact you at the contact information provided in your application if we need more information to complete your request.

Our online service guarantee does not apply if you cannot provide a guarantor.

Contact us

For more information, please contact ServiceOntario at: