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What Happens If You Lose Your College Diploma? 4 Tips To Help You Out

Rolled up diploma laid on a laptop keyboard

What Happens If You Lose Your College Diploma? 4 Tips To Help You Out Staff
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Many people who’ve graduated from college or university don’t realize that they should be taking steps to keep their diplomas safe. That’s because the loss of a diploma is likely to occur gradually and often without anyone realizing it. However, once you realize that your official, hard-earned and expensive diploma has been misplaced or stolen, you’ll likely feel a sense of panic. Don’t worry, you need not panic. Here are the steps you ought to follow if you lose your diploma certificate.

Contact The College’s/University’s Registrar’s Office

Contact the registrar’s office at the college or university you attended and request a replacement diploma. Most schools will only provide one free replacement diploma per graduate. After that, there’s usually a fee for each copy you request. Additionally, there’s often a waiting period between when you order the new diploma and when it arrives in the mail, which can be anywhere from two weeks to several months or more, depending on the school’s backlog.

Provide Proof Of Graduation

You’ll need to verify that you’re a school graduate before they begin processing your request. That might mean simply providing them with your name and dates of attendance, or it might take more legwork if you graduated a long time ago. In some cases, schools will require proof of graduation before issuing a replacement diploma.

A Replacement May Take Time

Ordering a replacement diploma can take time. If the registrar doesn’t have a copy on file, they’ll usually ask you to submit a replacement request online and be prepared to wait while they process the order. It could take weeks or months to receive the replacement document depending on how busy the registrar’s office is at any given time. That’s just one reason why it’s important not to wait too long if you’ve lost your diploma!

Ask If You Need A Notary

If the school is no longer in business and has no official records, or if your diploma goes missing after graduation and the school does not keep records of graduates, you might want to consider enlisting the help of a notary public. A notary public is someone who has been certified by their state to witness legal transactions and verify documentation. Typically, they are available at banks, libraries, law offices, and other public places.

To get a duplicate diploma issued through a notary public, have one of your old professors at the school write a letter confirming that you graduated with good standing. Have the professor sign their name on this letter in front of a notary public, who will then attach an embossed seal or stamp to the letter verifying that all information included is true.

Bottom Line

If you’ve lost your diploma, the first thing you’ll want to do is breathe. It’s not the end of the world, and plenty of solutions are at hand. Your first course of action should be to contact the school you graduated from and request a new copy. It’s well worth the money to have a replacement diploma, as starting a job with a gap in your resume because of a missing piece of paper can lead to missed opportunities and potential problems in the workplace.

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