State Vaccine

Exemption Options

Are vaccines Required in Your State?

Vaccination requirements are governed by each individual state. The following chart, created by the National Vaccine Information Center, describes the options you have when you are faced with the decision of whether or not to vaccinate your child, yourself or a loved one.

Understanding the Vaccine Exemption Map

In the states where there is a yellow syringe symbol, a personal belief, or philosophical reason is acceptable for declining vaccines. A state-issued form with your notarized signature is required to be on file with schools or other institutions that require vaccination.

A blue syringe symbol indicates a religious exemption is acceptable to decline vaccination. A signed note stating you do not want to vaccinate for “religious reasons” will be accepted by most schools and other institutions that require vaccines. Being a member of an organized religion is not necessarily required to employ the religious exemption.

The red syringe signifies a medical exemption. All states have this exemption to vaccines and require a document from your primary care physician or other medical specialist stating the medical reasons why vaccination may not be safe for the person requesting an exemption. There are only two states that only accept medical reasons for exemption (California and Mississippi). All other states offer the religious exemption and 16 states provide a philosophical exemption.

We recommend that you learn about the specific rules in your state. Some states require documents to be validated by a notary before they are accepted.