GN 00302.220 Range of Years Searched by BVS Custodians

A. General

The BVS custodian's records in the different States have varying search procedures for locating requested BC's.

The summaries which follow are designed as aids in determining whether discrepant DB's shown in the evidence in file have also been searched for a claimant who was born in a “Yes” State, and who alleges that a request for a BC for the DB alleged on the benefit application resulted in a “No Record” response. See GN 00302.057 D. for action to take if a discrepant DB is discovered after the initial interview.

The summaries may also be used in any situation where it is important to know for which years a search for a birth record may be assumed to have been made.

B. Years searched by BVS custodians

State    How Records
    Are Maintained
How BVS Searches For Record

Alabama

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1875-1899

  • 1900-1909

  • 1910-1919

  • 1920-1929

  • 1930-1939

  • 1940-1949

  • 1950-1959

  • 1960-1969

  • 1970-1979

  • From 1980-present, records are maintained in individual volumes for each year.

The entire volume containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If the alleged year of birth is the beginning or ending year of the volume, the nearest adjacent volume is searched.

  • EXAMPLE: Before a negative response is given on a request for a birth record for 1919, the 1910-1919 and the 1920-1929 records are searched.

Alaska

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

• Prior to 1920

• 1920-1929

• 1930-1939

• 1940-1944

• 1945-1949

• 1950-1954

• 1955-1959

• 1960-1964

• 1965-1969

• 1970-1974

• 1975-1977

• 1978

• 1979

• 1980-February 1981

The volumes are indexed. BVS checks the entire index for the volume which contains the requested year of birth before giving a negative response.

   
   

Arizona

  • Pre-1960 records are kept by decade:

    • 1909-1919

    • 1920-1929

    • 1930-1939

    • 1940-1949

    • 1950-1959

  • Post-1959 records are kept by year.

Pre-1960 records: BVS checks the decade of the alleged year of birth and the other decade nearest the year of birth before a negative response is given.

Post-1959 records: BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.

   
Arkansas——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
California——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
   

Colorado

  • Birth records from 1900-1928 are alphabetical.

  • Post-1928 records are kept in separate volumes for the following range of years:

    —1929-1938

    —1939-1948

    —1949-1958

    —1959-1968

    —1969-1978

    —1979-present

For post-1928 recrods only:

The entire 10-year volume containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If the year alleged is within a few years (i.e., no definite number) or a beginning or end of a volume, the adjacent volume containing a span of years nearest the alleged year of birth is searched.

If no record is found after the above search, the Birth Books which are alphabetized by county are searched.

For all unfound records, the request must be given to a supervisor (for futher searches as the supevisor feels appropriate).

   
Connecticut——BVS searches the year of, 3 years before, and 3 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
Delaware——For years of birth 1900-1916, all years in the period are searched.
 
After 1916, the year of, years before, and 2 years after the alleged year of birth are searched.
   
District of Columbia——  
   

Florida

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1865-1915

  • 1916-1925

  • 1926-1935

  • 1936-1945

  • 1946-1950

     

  • 1951-1955

  • 1956-1960

  • 1961-1965

     

  • 1966

  • 1967

  • 1968

  • 1969

  • 1970—present:

    Alphabetical indices are on microfilm in the following range of years:
    —1970-1974
    —1975-Present
    (Individual volumes for each year)

The entire volume containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If the alleged year of birth is the beginning or ending year of the volume, the nearest adjacent volume is searched.

  • EXAMPLE 1: Before a negative response is given on a request for a birth record for 1926, the 1926-1935 and the 1916-1925 records are searched.

    EXAMPLE 2: A request for a 1915 birth record would require a search of the 1865-1915 and the 1916-1925 records before a negative response is given.

In those indices which contain only 1 year, BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.

   
Georgia——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and t he year after the alleged year of birth.
   
Hawaii——BVS searches the year of, 2 years before, and 2 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
   

Idaho

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • Prior to 1911

  • 1911-1930

  • 1931-1942

  • 1943-1947

  • 1948-1951

  • 1952-1968

  • 1969—present

The entire volume containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If the alleged year of birth is the beginning or ending year of the volume, the nearest adjacent volume is searched.

  • EXAMPLE: Before a negative reply is given on a request for a birth record for 1930, the 1911—1930 and the 1931—1942 volumes are searched.

   
Illinois——BVS searches for the name, year, and place of birth.
 
If the first search is unsuccessful, all records are searched for a match in name and place of birth.
   
Indiana——BVS searches the year of, 2 years before, and 2 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
   

Iowa

Alphabetical indices which span the following years:

  • 1904—1919

  • 1920—1929

  • 1930—1939

  • 1940—1947

  • 1948—1959

  • 1960—1969

  • 1970—1979

  • 1980 —present

The index containing the year of birth is searched first.

Then the record book for the county and year of birth is searched before a negative response is given.

   

Kansas

  • Before 1948, records are kept in separate volumes for the following ranges of years:

    • —7/1/11—6/30/16

      —7/1/16—6/30/21

      —7/1/21—6/30/26

      —7/1/26—6/30/31

      —7/1/31—6/30/36

      —7/1/36—6/30/41

      —7/1/41—6/30/47

  • Births from 7/1/11- 12/31/47, are also kept by name indices in spans approximating the above.

For births prior to 1948, the entire index containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

For births after 1947, BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.

   
Kentucky——BVS searches the year of, 5 years before, and 5 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
   

Louisiana

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1914—1929

  • 1930—1934

  • 1935—1939

  • 1940—1944
     

  • 1945—1949

  • 1950—1954

  • 1955—1959

  • 1960—1964
     

  • 1965—1969

  • 1970—1974

  • 1975—present

The entire volume for 1914—1929 is checked for years of birth in that span.

For births from 1930—1974, BVS searches that year of, 5 years before, and 5 years after the alleged year of birth.

For births 1975—present, BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.

For births in the City of New Oreleans, BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.

   
Maine——BVS searches the year of, 2 years before, and 2 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
Maryland——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
Massachusetts——BVS searches the year of, 5 years before, and 5 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
Michigan——BVS searches only the year of birth.
   
Minnesota——BVS searches the year of, 2 years before, and 2 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
   

Mississippi

Separate volumes for the following range of years;

  • 1912—1916

  • 1917—1921

  • 1922—1926

  • 1927—1931

  • 1932—1936
     

  • 1937—1941

  • 1942—1946

  • 1947—1951

  • 1952—1956

  • 1957—1961
     

  • 1962—1966

  • 1967—1971

  • 1972—1976

  • 1977—present

Soundex system books which cover 5-year periods are used. The entire index containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If the alleged year of birth is the beginning or ending year of a Soundex Book, the nearest adjacent Soundex Book is searched.

  • EXAMPLE 1: Before a negative response is given on a request for a 1921 BC, the 1917-1921 and the 1922-1926 Soundex Books are searched.

    EXAMPLE 2: A request for a 1917 BC would require a search of the 1917-1921 and the 1912-1916 Soundex Books before a “No Record” response is given.

BVS also searches only the alleged year of birth in its county index books.

   
   

Missouri

Alphabetical listings which span the following range of years:

  • 1910—1936

  • 1937—1950

  • 1951—1971

  • 1972—present(computerized index)

  • 1910—present (on Soundex)

    NOTE: BVS also has listing of legal adoptions, delayed birth records grouped into those before 1910 and those issued in 1910 and after, and records of stillborn births.

If no record is found in thse indices, the county records are checked for at least the year of birth.

  • NOTE: Complete information on the SSA-L706 (Letter to Custodian of Birth Records) is very important.

   
Montana——BVS searches the year of, 2 years before, and 2 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
NebraskaAlphabetical listing indexed by the father's name or, if not available, by the mother's name.Listing spanning all years, is searched first.
 
If no record is found, BVS searches the county records for the alleged month and year of birth.
 
If still unable to locate, the search expands to include the 12 month period after the alleged month and year of birth before a negative response is given.
   
   

Neveda

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1911—1939

  • 1940—1963

  • 1964—present

The entire index containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If the alleged year of birth is the beginning or ending year of the index, the nearest adjacent index is searched.

  • EXAMPLE: Before a “No Record” response is given on a request for a birth record for 1939, the 1911—1939 and the 1940—1963 indices are searched.

   
New Hampshire——BVS has no specific policy. Several years before and aft er the alleged year of birth are searched. Each researcher has the latitude to expand the number of years searched.
 
For purposes of these instructions, assume that BVS searches the year of, 2 years before, and 2 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
New Jersey——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
   

New Mexico

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1906—1915

  • 1916—1925

  • 1926—1930

  • 1931—1935

  • 1936—1940

  • 1941—1945

  • 1946—1950

  • 1951—1955

  • 1956—1960

  • 1961—1965

  • 1966—1972

  • 1973—1977

  • Each year after 1977 is in a separate volume.

The entire volume containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If the alleged year of birth is the beginning or ending year of the volume, the nearest adjacent volume is searched:

  • EXAMPLE 1: Before a “No Record” response is given on a request for a 1925 BC, the 1916—1925 and the 1926—1930 volumes are searched.

    EXAMPLE 2: A request for a 1926 BC would require a search of the 1926—1930 and the 1916-1925 volumes before a negative response is given.

   
New York——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
North Carolina——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
   

North Dakota

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1910—1919

  • 1920—1929

  • 1930—1939

  • 1940—1949

  • 1950—1959

  • 1960—1969

  • 1970—1978

  • 1979—present

The entire volume containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If the alleged year of birth is within 2 years of the beginning or ending year of the volume, the nearest adjacent volume is searched.

  • EXAMPLE 1: Before a “No Record” response is given on a request for a 1918 BC, the 1910—1919 and the 1920—1929 volumes are searched.

    EXAMPLE 2: A request for a 1921 BC would require a search of the 1910—1919 and the 1920—1929 volumes before a negative response is given.

   
Ohio——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
Oklahoma——Only the year(s) alleged in the request and the delayed birth records are searched.
   
Oregon——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and 2 years after the alleged birth.
   
Pennsylvania——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
Puerto Rico——The number of years searched is discretionary.
   
Rhode Island——BVS searches the year of, 2 years before, and 2 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
   

South Carolina

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1915—1919

  • 1920—1929

  • 1930—1939

  • 1940—1949

  • 1950—1959

  • 1960—1969

  • 1970—1978

  • 1979—present

The entire volume containing the alleged year of birth is searched

If the alleged year of birth is within 2 years of the beginning or ending year of the volume, the nearest adjacent volume is searched.

  • EXAMPLE 1: Before a “No Record” response is given on a request for a 1918 BC, the 1915-1919 and the 1920-1929 volumes are searched.

    EXAMPLE 2: A request for a 1920 BC would require a search of the 1915-1919 and the 1920-1929 volumes before a negative response is given.

   
   

South Dakota

Separate volmes for the following range of years:

  • 19190—1919

  • 1920—1929

  • 1930—1939

  • 1940—1949

  • 1950—1959

  • 1960—1969

  • 1970—1979

  • 1980—present

BVS searches only the volume containing the alleged year of birth

   
Tennessee——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
Texas——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
Utah——The method of searching records for a 10-year period is discretionary. Records are searched either 10 years before or after the alleged year of birth or 5 years before and after the alleged year of birth.
 
For purposes of this instruction, assume that BVS searches the year of, 5 years before, and 5 years after the alleged year of birth unless the claimant advises that a different range was searched. Accept the claimant's allegation as to range searched if it appears to be founded on certain knowledge.
   
   

Vermont

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1760—1954

  • 1955—1979

  • 1980—Present

BVS searches the entire volume containing the alleged year of birth.

   
U.S. Virgin Islands——The number of years searched is discretionary.
 
For purposes of this instruction, assume that BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
   

Virginia

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 6/14/12—1919

  • 1920—1924

  • 1925—1929

  • 1930—1934

  • 1935—1939

  • 1940—1944

  • 1955—1959

  • 1960—1964

  • 1965—1969

  • 1970—1974

  • Each year after 1974 is in a separate volume.

The entire volume containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If no record is found, the volumes immediately before and after are also searched.

Washington

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1907—1909

  • 1910—1919

  • 1920—1929

  • 1930—1939

  • 1940—1944

  • 1945—1949

  • 1950—1954

  • 1955—1959

  • 1960—1964

  • 1965—1969

  • 1970—1974

  • 1975—1979

  • 1980—Present

BVS searches all years in a volume.

Mississippi

Separate volumes for the following range of years;

  • 1912—1916

  • 1917—1921

  • 1922—1926

  • 1927—1931

  • 1932—1936
     

  • 1937—1941

  • 1942—1946

  • 1947—1951

  • 1952—1956

  • 1957—1961
     

  • 1962—1966

  • 1967—1971

  • 1972—1976

  • 1977—present

Soundex system books which cover 5-year periods are used. The entire index containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If the alleged year of birth is the beginning or ending year of a Soundex Book, the nearest adjacent Soundex Book is searched.

  • EXAMPLE 1: Before a negative response is given on a request for a 1921 BC, the 1917-1921 and the 1922-1926 Soundex Books are searched.

    EXAMPLE 2: A request for a 1917 BC would require a search of the 1917-1921 and the 1912-1916 Soundex Books before a “No Record” response is given.

BVS also searches only the alleged year of birth in its county index books.

   
   

Missouri

Alphabetical listings which span the following range of years:

  • 1910—1936

  • 1937—1950

  • 1951—1971

  • 1972—present(computerized index)

  • 1910—present (on Soundex)

    NOTE: BVS also has listing of legal adoptions, delayed birth records grouped into those before 1910 and those issued in 1910 and after, and records of stillborn births.

If no record is found in thse indices, the county records are checked for at least the year of birth.

  • NOTE: Complete information on the SSA-L706 (Letter to Custodian of Birth Records) is very important.

   
Montana——BVS searches the year of, 2 years before, and 2 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
NebraskaAlphabetical listing indexed by the father's name or, if not available, by the mother's name.Listing spanning all years, is searched first.
 
If no record is found, BVS searches the county records for the alleged month and year of birth.
 
If still unable to locate, the search expands to include the 12 month period after the alleged month and year of birth before a negative response is given.
   
   

Neveda

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1911—1939

  • 1940—1963

  • 1964—present

The entire index containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If the alleged year of birth is the beginning or ending year of the index, the nearest adjacent index is searched.

  • EXAMPLE: Before a “No Record” response is given on a request for a birth record for 1939, the 1911—1939 and the 1940—1963 indices are searched.

   
New Hampshire——BVS has no specific policy. Several years before and aft er the alleged year of birth are searched. Each researcher has the latitude to expand the number of years searched.
 
For purposes of these instructions, assume that BVS searches the year of, 2 years before, and 2 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
New Jersey——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
   

New Mexico

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1906—1915

  • 1916—1925

  • 1926—1930

  • 1931—1935

  • 1936—1940

  • 1941—1945

  • 1946—1950

  • 1951—1955

  • 1956—1960

  • 1961—1965

  • 1966—1972

  • 1973—1977

  • Each year after 1977 is in a separate volume.

The entire volume containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If the alleged year of birth is the beginning or ending year of the volume, the nearest adjacent volume is searched:

  • EXAMPLE 1: Before a “No Record” response is given on a request for a 1925 BC, the 1916—1925 and the 1926—1930 volumes are searched.

    EXAMPLE 2: A request for a 1926 BC would require a search of the 1926—1930 and the 1916-1925 volumes before a negative response is given.

   
New York——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
North Carolina——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.

North Dakota

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1910—1919

  • 1920—1929

  • 1930—1939

  • 1940—1949

  • 1950—1959

  • 1960—1969

  • 1970—1978

  • 1979—present

The entire volume containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If the alleged year of birth is within 2 years of the beginning or ending year of the volume, the nearest adjacent volume is searched.

  • EXAMPLE 1: Before a “No Record” response is given on a request for a 1918 BC, the 1910—1919 and the 1920—1929 volumes are searched.

    EXAMPLE 2: A request for a 1921 BC would require a search of the 1910—1919 and the 1920—1929 volumes before a negative response is given.

   
Ohio——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
Oklahoma——Only the year(s) alleged in the request and the delayed birth records aresearched.
   
Oregon——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and 2 years after the alleged birth.
   
Pennsylvania——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
Puerto Rico——The number of years searched is discretionary.
   
Rhode Island——BVS searches the year of, 2 years before, and 2 years after the alleged year of birth.
   
   

South Carolina

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1915—1919

  • 1920—1929

  • 1930—1939

  • 1940—1949

  • 1950—1959

  • 1960—1969

  • 1970—1978

  • 1979—present

The entire volume containing the alleged year of birth is searched

If the alleged year of birth is within 2 years of the beginning or ending year of the volume, the nearest adjacent volume is searched.

  • EXAMPLE 1: Before a “No Record” response is given on a request for a 1918 BC, the 1915-1919 and the 1920-1929 volumes are searched.

    EXAMPLE 2: A request for a 1920 BC would require a search of the 1915-1919 and the 1920-1929 volumes before a negative response is given.

   
   

South Dakota

Separate volmes for the following range of years:

  • 19190—1919

  • 1920—1929

  • 1930—1939

  • 1940—1949

  • 1950—1959

  • 1960—1969

  • 1970—1979

  • 1980—present

BVS searches only the volume containing the alleged year of birth

   
Tennessee——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
Texas——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
Utah——The method of searching records for a 10-year period is discretionary. Records are searched either 10 years before or after the alleged year of birth or 5 years before and after the alleged year of birth.
 
For purposes of this instruction, assume that BVS searches the year of, 5 years before, and 5 years after the alleged year of birth unless the claimant advises that a different range was searched. Accept the claimant's allegationas to range searched if it appears to be founded on certain knowledge.
   
   

Vermont

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1760—1954

  • 1955—1979

  • 1980—Present

BVS searches the entire volume containing the alleged year of birth.

   
U.S. Virgin Islands——The number of years searched is discretionary.
 
For purposes of this instruction, assume that BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
   
   

Virginia

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 6/14/12—1919

  • 1920—1924

  • 1925—1929

  • 1930—1934

  • 1935—1939

  • 1940—1944

  • 1955—1959

  • 1960—1964

  • 1965—1969

  • 1970—1974

  • Each year after 1974 is in a separate volume.

The entire volume containing the alleged year of birth is searched.

If no record is found, the volumes immediately before and after are also searched.

   
   

Washington

Separate volumes for the following range of years:

  • 1907—1909

  • 1910—1919

  • 1920—1929

  • 1930—1939

  • 1940—1944

  • 1945—1949

  • 1950—1954

  • 1955—1959

  • 1960—1964

  • 1965—1969

  • 1970—1974

  • 1975—1979

  • 1980—Present

BVS searches all years in a volume.

West Virginia——BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.
Wisconsin——BVS searches the year of, 5 years before, and 5 years after the alleged year of birth if the request specifies a complete DB.
 
BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth if only the year of birth is given on the request.
Wyoming Birth records prior to 1952 are maintained alphabetically.For records prior to 1952, BVS searches all records for the alleged surname.
 
For births during 1952 and later, BVS searches the year of, the year before, and the year after the alleged year of birth.

To Link to this section - Use this URL:
http://policy.ssa.gov/poms.nsf/lnx/0200302220
GN 00302.220 - Range of Years Searched by BVS Custodians - 10/06/1994
Batch run: 01/27/2009
Rev:10/06/1994