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Death Certificates

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Death Certification Services

 

The Vital Records Division will close at 12 noon on Tuesday, July 24, 2018 for mandatory staff training. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. Our office will reopen on Wednesday, July 25, 2018 at 8:30 a.m.

The Vital Records Division has death certificates dating back to August 1874. Death records become public 50 years after the date of death. Death certificates are only available to mother, father, sister, brother, spouses named on the death certificate, children, informants and legal representatives (proof of relationship is required). All others requesting certified copies of death certificates, must demonstrate direct and tangible interest.

Before you order a certified copy of a District of Columbia birth, death or domestic partnership certificate, it is important to be familiar with who is entitled to order these important documents, and what is considered acceptable proof of identity during the ordering process.

Watch our short video for a brief summary of these requirements.

Identity & Entitlement Requirements Video

 

 

Click here for a downloadable version of the Identity Verification Approval Guidelines for additional details about identity documentation required to obtain a birth certificate.

Click here for a downloadable version of the Entitlement Verification Approval Guidelines for additional details about proof of entitlement documentation required to obtain a birth certificate.

How to Obtain a Death Certificate

The Vital Records Division has many ways you can request these important documents – including online, by phone, by mail or at a kiosk in our office.

Watch our short video for a quick overview of the various ways you can order your certificate today.

Vital Records Division Order Methods Video

 

 

Click here for a downloadable version of the Vital Records Division Order Methodsinformation.

Walk-in Application Requests

The Vital Records Division is equipped with easy-to-use self-service kiosks to facilitate streamlined order processing. For more information about the kiosks, view the below short video:

Self-Service Kiosk Overview

A walk-in application request for a certified copy of a death certificate can be made using our self-service kiosks by visiting the Vital Records Division located at:

Department of Health
Vital Records Division
899 North Capitol Street, NE - First Floor
Washington, DC 20002

The hours of operations are 8:30 am- 3:30 pm, Monday - Friday and the office is closed on major holidays.

Walk-in Death Certification Fees

Description

Fee

Death Certificate - Certified

$18.00

Amendment to a Death Certificate

$23.00

Administrative Copies

$10.00 per request

Verifications

$5.00 per request

Certificate of Search (3 Consecutive Years)**

$18.00 - Deaths

**The VRD will perform a search with the information you provide in your application. If we are unable to locate a record with the information provided, you will receive a Certificate of Search. If within three years from issuance of the original Certificate of Search you are able to provide additional information with which we are able to locate the record, VRD will provide the vital record to you at no additional charge. Please note, however, that you will be required to return to the VRD all Certificates of Search issued to you in association with that order prior to receiving the vital record. For more information, please see our Search, Exchange and Return of Fees Policy.

Mail-in Application Requests

A mail-in application request may be submitted for a certified copy of a death certificate by completing the following form:

Death Certificate Application

 

Please allow 36-48 hours for applications to be received prior to calling the customer service department with questions about your application. The contact phone number to call is (877) 572-6332.

Mail-in Application Fees

Description

Fee

Death Certificate**

$18

Mail order Processing

$6

Shipping

-

UPS Next Day Air

$20.00

UPS to Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico

$40.00

UPS to Canada or Mexico

$26.00

UPS Worldwide Expedited

$36.50

U.S. Postal Service- Regular Mail

$0.00

**The VRD will perform a search with the information you provide in your application. If we are unable to locate a record with the information provided, you will receive a Certificate of Search. If within three years from issuance of the original Certificate of Search you are able to provide additional information with which we are able to locate the record, VRD will provide the vital record to you at no additional charge. Please note, however, that you will be required to return to the VRD all Certificates of Search issued to you in association with that order prior to receiving the vital record. For more information, please see our Search, Exchange and Return of Fees Policy.

Online and Telephone-Order Requests

For your convenience, you can make your requests online or over the telephone through VitalChek Network, Inc., an independent company that we have partnered with to provide this service. VitalChek can be reached through their website, www.vitalchek.com or by phone at (877) 572-6332. An additional fee is charged by VitalChek for using this service; all major credit cards are accepted.

 

Online/Phone Application Fees

 

Description

Fee

Death Certificate**

$18

Online/Phone order Processing

$15.95

Shipping

-

UPS Next Day Air

$20.00

UPS to Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico

$40.00

UPS to Canada or Mexico

$26.00

UPS Worldwide Expedited

$36.50

U.S. Postal Service- Regular Mail

$0.00

 

**The VRD will perform a search with the information you provide in your application. If we are unable to locate a record with the information provided, you will receive a Certificate of Search. If within three years from issuance of the original Certificate of Search you are able to provide additional information with which we are able to locate the record, VRD will provide the vital record to you at no additional charge. Please note, however, that you will be required to return to the VRD all Certificates of Search issued to you in association with that order prior to receiving the vital record. For more information, please see our Search, Exchange and Return of Fees Policy.

Genealogy/Legacy Requests

Important Information Regarding Genealogy/Legacy Record Requests

If you would like to know the status of your genealogy/legacy order placed via mail, phone or online, please call (877) 572-6332 - Option #4.

If you have general questions regarding genealogy/legacy searches, please call (877) 572-6332 - Option #3.

Death Record Amendment Services

There are several provisions in the District of Columbia statue whereby corrections, amendments and/or changes may be made to birth and death certificates. Vital Records encourages you to mail your correction requests or call Vital Record’s Customer Service line at (877) 572-6332 - Option #5. Vital Records Division will gladly explain and forward all the necessary information to you on how to make corrections and amendments.

Death Record Amendment and Registration Fees

Description

Fee

Death Certificate - Certified

$18.00

Amendment to a Death Certificate

$23.00

 

Genealogy Requests

Genealogy requests often times requires an exhaustive search by Vital Records Division staff and involves working with the Federal or DC Records Center. Because of this, genealogy requests may take 6-8 weeks to process.

If you would like to know the status of your genealogy/legacy order placed via mail, phone or online, please call (877) 572-6332 - Option #4.

If you have general questions regarding genealogy/legacy searches, please call (877) 572-6332 - Option #3.

Online Appointment Scheduling

You may walk-in during service hours to request amendment and registration. If you would like to make an appointment for these services, please schedule at appts.dcvsims.com. Appointments must be scheduled by 4 p.m. EST to be included for next-day processing.

Scheduling your appointment online and checking in is as easy as 1, 2, 3.

1. Select a preferred service type, appointment date and time then provide your contact information.

2. Your confirmation will include contact information, arrival time, service requested, as well as a unique bar code and confirmation number.

3. Please check-in at the DCVRD Reception Desk when you arrive and have a seat in our waiting area. Once check-in is complete, you are entered into the priority queue tracking your visit at DCVRD. You will be called for your appointment shortly thereafter.

Please arrive promptly for your appointment. You can check-in up to 30 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment. There will be a 10-minute grace period if you are late. If you miss your appointment, please reschedule or proceed to the Reception Desk to be seen as a walk-in customer. If you need to cancel or reschedule your appointment, please visit appts.dcvsims.com.

The DCVRD services currently being offered through our online appointment scheduling system are amendments, death registrations, delayed birth registrations, home birth registrations, domestic partnership registrations.

Please have all requirements and forms completed and be prepared to pay associated fees before checking in. If you do not have all required forms/applications completed before being called to the counter, your appointment will be delayed and you will be seen as a walk-in appointment.

Related Links:

 

Attachment(s):

District of Columbia Death Application - 324.6 KB (pdf)

Service Contact:

Center for Policy Planning and Evaluation, Vital Records Division

Contact Phone:

(202) 442-9303

Contact Fax:

(202) 442-4848

Contact TTY:

711

Contact Suite #:

First Floor

Office Hours:

Monday to Friday 8:30 am to 3:30 pm


 
Service Contact: 
Center for Policy Planning and Evaluation, Vital Records Division
Contact Phone: 
(202) 442-9303
Contact Fax: 
(202) 442-4848
Contact TTY: 
711
Contact Suite #: 
First Floor
Office Hours: 
Monday to Friday 8:30 am to 3:30 pm