An original birth certificate is the document your parents received after your birth.
A certified copy of a birth certificate is issued by the city where you were born.
The French Consulate and French government agencies require a recent (issued less than 3 months prior) certified copy of your birth certificate.
In the US, you can request a certified copy of your birth certificate online or by mail depending on where you were born.
In France, you can request a certified copy of your French birth certificate online on the web site of the city where you were born. Major French cities have a web site providing copies of birth certificates upon request at no charge. They will mail it to your US address.
The certified copy has the same legal standing as the original your parents received at your birth.
We do not recommend beginning the translation from your original document since there may be extra fees for changes required when you bring us an updated version of your document (the certified copy).