Request records and information FAQs
It's usually simple to obtain a copy of your birth certificate. In most cases, you just need to contact the vital records office in the state that you were born. You may even be able to request a copy online. If you need your records quickly, you may be able to pay to expedite the process.
If you are an American who was born abroad or on a military base, or if you were adopted from another country to American parents, you can contact the U.S. embassy or consulate in that country to learn how you can obtain a copy of your birth record. You may need to ask for your documents to be translated. To obtain copies of naturalization or citizenship documents, you can contact the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for assistance.
If you are looking to extend a line of credit to someone or vetting potential renters, you may need to run a credit and background check. It is not difficult to obtain these reports, but you do need permission. We provide the background check release form solo or there is one included in the Rental Application form. All three credit reporting agencies (TransUnion, Experian, Equifax) provide background check services for landlords, employers and finance companies. The reports cost around $30.
Many organizations may request a certified copy of a death certificate before they will provide services or release insurance payments. The easiest way to obtain copies is to request them from the funeral home or mortuary. You should ask for numerous copies, so you do not have to request more copies later. You can start by ordering ten for good measure. If a bit of time has passed, you may need to request copies from your county or state's vital records office.
If you are looking to get married again, you may be asked to show proof of your divorce. If you have misplaced a copy of your divorce decree, you can obtain a copy from the county clerk or the department of vital records in the county you were divorced in. If the county office doesn't have access to your records, try the state office.
While a Will maker (testator) is alive, Wills are considered private. Once the Will is through probate, it is considered a "public" document. You will need to obtain the probate number to view the Will. Or, you may have to contact the local court to request information on how to obtain a copy of the Will. You may even be able to obtain probate information online. You will need the full name and date of death to search for Will records.