Instant Access to State, County and Municipal Records
Delaware Vital Records
The Office of Vital Records looks after all state vital files in Delaware, including those detailing a person’s key life events. These key life events can comprise of births, deaths, marriages, and divorces. The vital files maintained regarding these events may include divorce decrees, divorce certificates and other divorce records, birth certificates, death certificates, marriage licenses, marriage certificates. All these vital documents are stored in one central registry with all other state vital files to be used for statistical analysis.
Divorce records are handed out by government officials in the state of Delaware, after the event is registered. When a person files for divorce/annulment in the state of Delaware, records on the event are kept in a central registry, with other state vital files. These records may include divorce certificates, divorce decrees, as well as other divorce-related records. It depends on the individual state as to whether these records can be accessed and copied by the public. Copies of records cost $25 each in the state of Delaware. There was a divorce rate of 3 per 1,000 inhabitants in Delaware in 2017.
Marriage records are also given out by government officials after the event is formally registered. In Delaware, a state-wide registration of marriages was introduced in 1847, and was generally complied with by 1913. Within the Family History Library, microfilm copies of marriage bonds between the dates 1744-1836 and 1855-1861 can be found, along with marriage licenses from between 1889-1894. For more recent marriage records, a person must contact the Bureau of Vital Statistics. For records dating back more than 40 years, a person must contact the Delaware Public Archives. Counties in Delaware started recording marriages as early as 1832, which can also now be found at the Delaware Public Archives. Copies of records cost $25 each in the state of Delaware. There was a marriage rate of 5.5 per 1,000 inhabitants in Delaware in 2017.
Birth records generally refer to the certificate issued upon the birth of every child in the state of Delaware, or a certified copy of this certificate. Birth records in Delaware are uniquely split into two categories, due to the fact that a state-wide registration was introduced on two separate occasions. A state-wide registration first came into play in 1861, before being implemented again in 1881. The two categories of birth records are 1861-1863 and 1881-present day. After the state-wide registration resumed in 1881, it was complied with by 1921. Birth records are collected and stored by the Delaware Bureau of Vital Statistics. Copies of records cost $25 each in the state of Delaware.
Death records refer to the copy of information from a Delaware resident’s death certificate upon their passing. Some deaths were recorded as early as 1855 in the state of Delaware. A state-wide registration of deaths was implemented in 1881, and was complied with by 1890. The last 40 years’ worth of death records can be found at the Delaware Bureau of Vital Statistics. . For records dating back more than 40 years, a person must contact the Delaware Public Archives. Copies of records cost $25 each in the state of Delaware.
Why are these records available to the public?
The Delaware Freedom of Information Act was introduced in 1977, with the most recent amendments coming in 2009. This act ensures that every resident of the state has the right to access all public records. All records held by the local or state government can be accessed and copied by the public.
To access records:
Office of Vital Statistics
Division of Public Health
417 Federal Street
Dover, DE 19901