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February 6, 24

NEWS / Texas Man Stuck in Limbo Without Birth Certificate


For Brandon Hughes, proving his own existence has become a frustrating and seemingly impossible task. Unlike most people, he doesn't have a birth certificate, thanks to an error at the hospital where he was born in 2003. Now, at 20 years old, his lack of this seemingly basic document is impacting his entire life.

According to Fox 26 Houston, Hughes was born at Christus St. Catherine's Hospital in Houston, which is now Methodist Hospital. However, someone at the hospital failed to properly file his birth certificate. This critical oversight has snowballed into a bureaucratic nightmare for Hughes and his mother, Sami Dehkorai.

"You can't request a copy of something that never existed," Dehkorai told Fox 26 Houston. "So, what do I do? Where do I go? Who do I call?"

Their attempts to rectify the situation have been met with dead ends and conflicting information. Hughes and Dehkorai believe their case is uncommon, judging by the reactions they've received from government officials.

"Just based on how all the government officials we are talking to...the way they're reacting to it tells me that either it's extremely rare or it's just something they have never seen before," Hughes said.

Dehkorai has provided the Department of Vital Statistics in Austin with various documents, including a sealed school transcript, as proof of Hughes' birth. They requested a delayed birth certificate application, which requires notarization. This presents another catch-22 hurdle for Hughes, as he lacks the necessary government-issued ID (driver's license, state ID, or social security card) to get a document notarized.

Dehkorai's frustration is palpable. "I've been trying for 15 years to get Brandon's birth certificate," she told Fox 26. "They just keep passing the buck."

The lack of a birth certificate has significant consequences for Hughes. He cannot obtain a driver's license, open a bank account, or secure employment that requires proper identification. This, in turn, hinders his ability to contribute financially, creating a difficult situation for both him and his mother.

While Hughes possesses a certificate of live birth, it doesn't hold the same legal weight as a birth certificate. The absence of this crucial document has placed his life on hold, creating unnecessary hurdles and roadblocks.

The story of Brandon Hughes highlights the importance of accurate birth certificate registration and the potential consequences of bureaucratic errors. His case raises questions about the procedures in place to rectify such mistakes and the support available to individuals caught in similar situations. Hopefully, Hughes' experience will prompt a closer look at how such issues are handled, ensuring that everyone has the opportunity to prove their existence and access their fundamental rights.

A&M Logos International reached out to Fox 26 Houston to recommend finding a notary public who is personally acquainted with Brandon, as Texas notary law allows notaries to perform their acts for individuals who they know personally without the need to verify their identification. We will keep you posted about any updates we receive about this red-tape nightmare.

 




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