Obtaining a copy of a German birth certificate is surprisingly simple considering you are dealing with a government agency. There are private services that will file your application for a replacement birth certificate for a significant fee. Since you have to gather most of the needed information yourself, the Germany Embassy's web site provides the information needed to apply on your own and save the expense of using a private company. The information provide on the Embassy's website is also available in Dutch (Deutsch) and in Spanish (Espanol).
Get the needed phone number or street address for the registrar's office in a specific city by entering "Einwohnermeldeamt, the name of the city the applicant was born in" in your preferred online search engine. Einwohnermeldeamt is German for "Office of Registration." Each city in Germany has its own office.
Contact the city's Registrar's Office by phone or mail.
When calling, have all the needed information ready. The staff at the Einwohnermeldeamts are usually bilingual.
When contacting an Einwohnermeldeamt by mail use this format:
The German phrase for asking for a birth certificate is: "Ich bitte um Ausstellung einer Geburtsurkunde für ... (first name/middle name/last name), geb. am ... (date of birth) in ... (place of birth). Eltern: ... (name of father) und ... (maiden name of mother)."
Write the date of birth out in words, for example, December 2, 1957, not 12/7/57, to avoid mixups. In Germany 12/7/57 would mean July 12, 1957.
Include your return address and £1.30 for return postage.
There is a fee involved in getting a copy of the birth certificate. The embassy site says that "Information on the fee will be sent to you with the certificate."