5 Steps to Follow After Losing a College Diploma Certificate


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Life after college can be a bit chaotic. You might be in and out of houses, internships, and jobs. Your items and essential paperwork like your college diploma certificate, might also go awry. Even worse, a fire, flood, or mold might destroy essential paperwork like that vital diploma certificate showcasing your credentials. What do you do after losing your diploma certification? For starters, it is imperative to replace it immediately when you notice it is damaged or lost. But how do you go about it? Let’s walk you through the steps to follow after losing a college diploma certificate.

Reach Out to the Registrar’s Office of the College you Attended

The registrar’s office keeps all the essential students’ records and transcripts. They also have the mandate to issue college certificates. Contact the registrar’s office of your alma mater and request a replacement of your diploma certificate. If you need the school’s contact information, search for it on your college website. They understand that losing certificates happen, and thus they will guide you in the right direction.

No one else Can Request a Replacement Diploma for you

You are the only person who can request the replacement of your Diploma Certificate. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 protects students’ records’ privacy. Therefore, your family members or spouse cannot be given access to your student records. If you are looking to replace a diploma certificate of a deceased alumna, it is possible. But, it would be best if you were the next of kin or an executor of their estate. Moreover, you will be required to formally request and present the student’s death certificate and proof of your relationship with the deceased.

Submit a Written Order for the Replacement of your Certificate

Replacing a college certificate is a formal process. You must make a written request to the registrar’s office. The registrar’s office may also require you to submit other documents like a copy of your passport or birth certificate for verification. Your alma mater may also require some of your documents to be notarized. Alongside, you may need to pay a certificate reissuing fee, which varies from college to college. If you need more clarification about the documents you are required to submit and the cost of re-issuance, contact the registrar’s office. 

The Certificate Replacement Process Takes Time 

The registrar’s office has a high volume of paperwork data they will need to sort through. The certificate replacement process may take some time. It would be best to create  fake diplomas to replace the lost one, as it is faster. Yes, waiting for a replacement from your alma mater may take up to ten weeks. You may end up losing internship or job opportunities. Moreover, creating a fake diploma is an excellent way to avoid losing the original.

Mail your Request

Most colleges are registered with FERPA. Therefore, they must follow specific regulations and standards when handling students’ information. One of the standards is that only written and mailed requests are acceptable to prevent fraud and identity theft. Therefore, you will be required to print the replacement form, fill it out by hand and then mail it to your alma mater’s registrar’s office.

In a nutshell

Replacing your diploma certificate may be a long and tedious process. Get a same-day certificate if you have an urgent need that requires a copy. Once you get your certificate, ensure you keep it in tip-top condition to protect and preserve it.

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