What Should You Do if You Lose Your College Diploma

Spending four years working towards a degree is not an easy task, especially when you're juggling classes and social life. This makes losing your college diploma at any stage a terrifying prospect.

Maybe your mom accidentally threw it out, maybe it disappeared in the move, or maybe you're just having trouble finding it in the maze of boxes you just unpacked. The fact that you don't have it on hand could affect your job opportunities.

Whatever the reason, you might be worried about what should you do if you lose your college diploma. Never fear, read on and learn how!

Reach Out To The Registrar's Office 

If you lose your college diploma, the first thing you should do is reach out to the registrar's office. They will be able to help you locate a copy of your diploma and get you a replacement if necessary.

There is usually a fee for this service, but it is worth it to have a replacement diploma. The registrar's office will also be able to advise you on what to do if you need to replace your transcript as well.

Submit A Written Replacement Order

Yes, this is a formal procedure that must be followed. Most colleges and universities will only accept a written request for a replacement diploma or degree.

You must also submit a notarized copy of your driver's license, passport, or birth certificate, as well as a copy of the letter.

Because your replacement diploma will most likely be mailed to you, you will need to pay for shipping. There is also a fee associated with re-issuing a replacement diploma, which varies by college. Depending on the institution and type of diploma or degree, this fee can range from $25 to $150.

Know That Only You Can Request A Replacement Diploma

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), enacted in 1974, safeguards the confidentiality of all student records. This means that only you have the authority to formally request a replacement diploma.

Due to this rule, family members and spouses will be denied access to your personal information. However, there are a few exceptions.

Only the next-of-kin or executor of a deceased former student's estate can submit a formal written request to replace their diploma. Specific requirements may differ between colleges. However, you will need proof of your relationship with the deceased, a copy of their death certificate, etc.

Know That Replacement Process Takes Time

The replacement of your diploma takes some time due to the large volume of paperwork and data that the registrar's office will have to sort through. In general, you can expect to wait 4-6 weeks. However, depending on the year you graduated, it could take up to ten weeks.

Replacing a diploma takes a lot of time and effort. Factors like living far away from the college you graduated from or being too busy to handle the paperwork. That is why people would rather settle for other alternatives 

Due to these issues, some people would rather get a fake or novelty diploma until they get their certified copy. If you want to more about this kind of diploma, read here.

Keep Your College Diploma Safe

If you have lost your college diploma, you should reach out to your college's Registrar's office and request a replacement. Be sure to include your full name, date of birth, and the name of the institution in your request.

There may be a small fee for replacing your diploma. That is why you need to be sure to keep it in a safe place!

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