Vital records are those documents that provide a critical event (i.e. milestone) in our lives.
These records include legal certificates of your birth, marriage, death, and court documents of any divorces.
Each of these vital records provides not only documentation about the event, but they are also important in other ways after the event took place.
People search online for vital records for many reasons, including:
- Ascertaining family history (i.e. genealogy / family tree);
- Background checks on specific people;
- Locating a person;
- Providing proof of death (for insurance / tax purposes); and
- Obtaining a driver’s license
Searching for vital records can be quite a challenge if you don’t know the state or county where the event took place.
However, if you know the state and county, you can contact that particular government agency (e.g. registrar, county courthouse or state office of vital statistics), request access to those documents, pay a small fee and get the forms to complete your request.
State and county agencies can normally be contacted via the Internet where you can make your request.
A great place to start looking for the adequate state vital records agency is by using the state-by-state resource provided by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention site (www.cdc.gov), where you can select the specific state you need and search specific offices for each vital record you require.
But if you only have a name and do not have any idea where the vital event took place, you can use Investigations123.com – our online resource for all vital records requirements.
Our online resource is very helpful for family searches and genealogy, and provides over 1 billion records accessible. In addition, you can browse collections of records, and get expert vital record search advice.
Your vital records search, whether it’s for yourself, a family member, or someone else, begins at your fingertips, here at Investigations123.com. Using our online resources can save you time, stress, and money, and get you the records or information you require, in a very efficient way. A Sample Birth Report is provided below.
Vital records are important in many ways. Below is a list of each vital record, what’s included, and why they are so useful.
A birth certificate gives a recorded document of the day, time, and location of an individual’s birth. If the birth occurred at a hospital, the birth certificate is usually certified by the attending physician and issued by that medical facility. Otherwise, a standard birth certificate form can be easily obtained by the state registrar and certified by a doctor, or other state-approved certifier.
On the birth certificate form in the US, you’ll find the following:
• Child’s Information – i.e. name, date and time of birth, sex, city and county of birth, and the specific place of birth (hospital, residence, etc.)
• Certifier/Attendant – must be an approved certifier by the state
• Mother’s Information
• Father’s Information
• Other Demographic Information – such as pregnancy history, marriage status of mother, race, etc.
This document is kept in the registrar’s office in each state for important census information. Also, your certified copy of your birth certificate is used for a verifiable source of identification, obtaining a driver’s license, a passport, or a social security number, and for documentation of a family history or genealogy search.
A marriage license, or marriage certificate, is also issued and kept at the state level, and is a legal documentation of the marriage between 2 people recognized by such state as being eligible for marriage.
A marriage certificate is signed by both parties of the marriage and an officiant, and it is also filed with a state government agency, which is usually a county clerk or registrar. The information includes the date and county where the marriage took place.
Marriage certificates can be useful for verifying a marital union, obtaining spousal insurance, and verifying a family history.
Divorce records are legal documents usually written by attorneys and filed in county courts. They are vital for legalizing the dissolution of a marriage and stating specific duties by each spouse for paying child or spousal support and dividing marital assets.
Divorce documents normally include the names of the parties, when and where the marriage took place, and the date the divorce was finalized in the court and signed by a judge. They may also contain information such as income records, criminal records, tax records, and lists of assets.
Divorce records can be used for determining the divorce status of an individual, revealing criminal history of an individual, verifying the last known address of an individual, and verifying family history for a genealogy search.
Death certificates (like birth certificates), are also important for keeping morbidity information and public health on file. When a death occurs, a certificate of death is issued by a coroner, or other government official. Such certificate explains the approximate date, place, time, and cause of death. They are important for verifying the death of an individual, use in estate probate, verifying genealogy search or family history, and verification of life insurance claims.