How to order Georgia Vital Records

Georgia Birth, Marriage, Divorce as well as Death records, known as vital records, produce information about important events in your ancestors life. Vital records, usually kept by a civic office, can give people a much more comprehensive picture of your ancestor, enable you to differentiate involving two people utilizing the same name, and assist you to uncover links to a new generation. They might consist of information like the event date and place, parents’ names, profession and residence. The cause of death is also included in the majority of Georgia death records.

Georgia vital records are a basis of Georgia genealogy and family history research because they were typically recorded at or near the time of the occurrence, making the document more likely to be correct. This web page includes links, details that can help you obtain copies from Georgia state and county vital records keepers. Vital records (births, deaths, marriages, and divorces) mark the milestones of our lives and are the basis of family tree and ancestors research.

Georgia Department of Health, issues, documents, and stores certified copies of vital records including birth, marriage, divorce death certificates for occurrences that took place in Georgia.  To verify current fees or for information on how to expedite a document, call (404) 679-4702 .

  • Ordering Georgia Birth and Death  Certificates: The Department of Health has Birth Certificates from January 1919 to present. The fee  is $25 with additional copies at $5 each when requested at the same time. If a Birth record is not found, you will be issued a “not found” statement in lieu of the certification
  • Ordering Georgia Marriage Certificates:  The Department of Health  has Marriage Certificates from June 9, 1952 to present. The fee  is $10 with additional copies at $5 each when requested at the same time. Records prior to June 9, 1952 must be requested at the Office of the Probate Judge in the county where the license was issued . The fee for the copy varies.
  • Ordering Georgia Divorce Certificates:  The Department of Health  does not issue certified copies of divorce records. For certified copies, contact the Clerk of Superior Court in the county where the divorce was granted. The fee for the copy varies.

How to Order Georgia Vital Records

  • Physical and Mailing Address: Georgia Division of Public Health, Vital Records, 2600 Skyland Drive NE, Atlanta, GA 30319; (404) 679-4702; Fax: (404) 679-4730. All mail orders should include a Personal check or money order made payable to Georgia Department of Public Health. Do not send cash.
  • Website Address: http://health.state.ga.us/
  • Ordering Vital Records Online - get the certificates within 2-5 days with a credit or debit card from USAVital.com or VitalChek.com
  • Ordering Vital Records by Mail: You can download an application online for Georgia Birth CertificateMarriage CertificateDivorce CertificateDeath Certificate Applications. Please allow up to 4-6 weeks for processing of all type of certificates ordered through the mail.
  • In Person: Each Georgia county has a vital records registrar and vital records custodian appointed by the state registrar. Depending upon the county, the vital records registrar or custodian may be located at the county health department or in the office of the probate judge. Most certificates can be issued while you wait.

Background of Georgia Vital Records

In 1875 Georgia tried to institute county registrations of deaths, marriages, and births for all counties. However, the law was repealed the following year. Some of the 1875 vital records for 14 of the counties have been placed on microfilm. They can be found at the Georgia Archives.

A 1919 law required that all deaths and births be registered on a statewide level, but some of the counties did not comply immediately. Full compliance didn’t begin until 1928. Some cities also had early death and birth recording requirements. They were:

  • Atlanta: Births, 1896; Deaths, 1887
  • Augusta: Births, 1823 to 1896
  • Savannah: Births, 1890; Deaths, 1803
  • Macon: Births, 1891; Deaths, 1882
  • Columbus: Births, 1869; Deaths, 1890
  • Gainesville: Births, 1865; Deaths, 1909

The Vital Records Unit of the Georgia Department of Human Resources can supply death and birth records. Urgent requests for certificates may be paid for via credit card over the phone, but there is an added fee.

Georgia marriage records are recorded by each county. Some marriage bond records were kept prior to 1805, even though it was not required before that year. Even after the law changed in 1805, some officials didn’t follow it. So, some marriages were not properly recorded. Several courthouse fires have also led to the loss of marriage records over the years. Marriage records from years before 1900 can be found at the Salt Lake City Family History Library (FHL) and the Georgia Archives on microfilm. Some loose county records can also be found at the Georgia Archives. Civil marriages up until 1810 can be found in the Heritage Papers’ periodical called the Georgia Genealogist.

Between the years of 1793 and 1832 the county superior court had to approve divorces, and then they were still subject to approval by the legislature. The county superior court offices still hold those divorce records.

Searchable Georgia Databases and other Helpful Links

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