Ordering a Certified Copy
The Division of Vital Records issues certified copies of all births and deaths that occurred in the state of North Dakota. All certified copies are issued in paper format on security paper with a raised seal indicating authenticity. All requests must be made in writing. Requests can be made by mail, fax, Internet or in person at our office in Bismarck. We DO NOT accept telephone or e-mail requests.
Requests for certified copies of marriage and divorce records must be obtained through the county where the marriage license was issued or the divorce was decreed. County information can be found by clicking on the marriage and divorce links on the right.
Effective January 1, 2008, the Division of Vital Records will need proof of identity for all individuals requesting a birth or death certificate. These new requirements are based on legislative changes that occurred during the 2007 North Dakota legislative session. The new changes restrict access to birth and death records as a preventative measure against identity theft and fraud. These requirements are explained in more detail on the birth and death record ordering pages.
Because of these new changes to state law, we must verify the identity of person's making requests for certified copies of birth and death certificates. To accomplish this, we are requiring that any person making a request must submit a legible photocopy of a current driver's license or photo ID when making a request. Any request that does not include photo ID will not be considered a complete request and will be be credited and returned by regular mail. These requirements are explained in more detail on the birth and death record ordering pages.
Once a complete request is received in our office, it is usually processed in 5-7 business days. This does not include return mail time! Expedited service can be requested for an additional fee and your request will be returned by express next day service. (Federal Express or UPS) . Due to the large volume of requests, we cannot give expedited service to everyone. UPS/FedEx requests that are received by 10:00 a.m. Central Time are guaranteed to be processed and shipped the same day the request was received (except weekends and holidays). If a UPS/FedEx request is received after the 10:00 a.m. deadline, it will be processed and shipped on the next business day. All other requests are processed and mailed from this office within 5-7 business days.