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Kentucky Vital Records

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The following is for informational purposes only

What are Kentucky Vital Records?

Vital records in Kentucky are the official records of all births, deaths, stillbirths, marriages, and divorces in the state of Kentucky. The Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services, Office of Vital Statistics, maintains and issues certified copies of these records.

The Kentucky Office of Vital Statistics does not have registrations of births or death records before 1911, except for some delayed records for persons born prior to 1911 that were established through affidavits and other evidence.

The Commonwealth of Kentucky Office of Vital Statistics also does not have records of marriages or divorces prior to June 1958. For marriage certificates prior to June 1958, the Kentucky local county clerk's offices where the marriage license was issued and filed are the repositories for those records. For divorce records prior to June 1958, you should contact the Kentucky District Court where the divorce was granted.

The Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archivesmaintains vital records for the years 1852 through 1910. The Kentucky Historical Societyalso maintains many vital records from this time period.

Kentucky county marriage records are some of the oldest surviving vital records. The counties of Lincoln, Jefferson, and Fayette have some marriage records dating to the 1780s.

 

How Can I Get a Copy of a Birth Certificate in Kentucky?

Kentucky birth records

Only the following persons can obtain birth records in Kentucky:

  • The person named as the registrant on the birth certificate.
  • A parent of the registrant if they are named on the birth certificate.
  • A legal guardian of the registrant, with proper documentation of status.
  • A person with a valid power of attorney document in favor of the registrant.
  • Anyone with a court order.

You will need to complete a copy of the Kentucky Application for a Certified Copy of Birth Certificate. Then, you may obtain certified copies of a Kentucky birth certificate online, by phone, mail, or in-person.

Kentucky uses VitalChek for online and phone orders. You can contact them at their website or by phone at (800) 241-8322. Payment can be made by credit cards, including American Express, Discover, MasterCard, and Visa. The fee for each certified copy of the birth certificate is $10, and VitalChek charges additional fees.

You may obtain certified copies in person at:

The Office of Vital Statistics
275 East Main Street
Frankfort, KY 40621

To obtain your certified copies by mail, you should submit your completed application, with a copy of your government-issued photo ID and payment by cash or money order to the Kentucky Department of Health (DPH), State Office of Public Health at:

Office of Vital Statistics
275 E. Main St., 1E-A
Frankfort, KY 40621

You may also contact the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services at their website, https://chfs.ky.gov.

 

How Can I Get a Copy of a Death Certificate in Kentucky?

Kentucky death records

Death certificates in Kentucky contain important personal sensitive information (such as the decedent's social security number), and they are confidential and only accessible to eligible people, which include:

  • The decedent's spouse.
  • The children of the decedent.
  • The parents of the decedent.
  • A funeral home.
  • A legal representative of the decedent or an eligible person.
  • An agent of law enforcement or a government agency.
  • Anyone with a court order.

You will need to complete a copy of the Kentucky Application Form a Certified Copy of Death Certificate. Then, you may obtain certified copies of a Kentucky death certificate online, by phone, mail, or in-person.

Kentucky uses VitalChek for online and phone orders. You can contact them at their website or by phone at (800) 241-8322. Payment can be made by credit cards, including American Express, Discover, MasterCard, and Visa. The fee for each certified copy of the death certificate is $6, and VitalChek charges additional fees.

You may obtain certified copies in person at:

Office of Vital Statistics
275 East Main Street
Frankfort, KY 40621

To obtain your certified copies by mail, you should submit your application with a copy of your government-issued photo ID and payment by cash or money order to the Kentucky health department at:

Office of Vital Statistics
275 E. Main St., 1E-A
Frankfort, KY 40621

 

How Can I Get a Copy of a Kentucky Marriage Certificate?

Kentucky marriage records

Marriage records in Kentucky are public records, and anyone may obtain a copy.

You will need to complete a copy of the Kentucky Application for a Certified Copy of Marriage Certificate. Then, you may obtain certified copies of a Kentucky marriage certificate online, by phone, mail, or in-person.

Kentucky uses VitalChek for online and phone orders. You can contact them at their website or by phone at (800) 241-8322. Payment can be made by credit cards, including American Express, Discover, MasterCard, and Visa. The fee for each certified copy of the marriage certificate is $6, and VitalChek charges additional fees.

You may obtain certified copies in person at:

Office of Vital Statistics
275 East Main Street
Frankfort, KY 40621

To obtain your certified copies by mail, you should submit your application with a copy of your government-issued photo ID and payment by cash or money order to:

Office of Vital Statistics
275 E. Main St., 1E-A
Frankfort, KY 40621

To obtain a marriage license in Kentucky, the couple wishing to be married must appear together at the county clerk of circuit court's office in the Kentucky county where they intend to be married. The marriage license is valid for 30 days from the date it is issued.

The parties must be at least 18 years old unless they have parental consent. With parental consent, the parties must be at least 16 years old.

When one of the parties is under the age of 18, the marriage license must be issued in the county where the underage party resides. If both parties are under the age of 18, the license must be issued in the bride's county of residence.

No one under the age of 16 may be issued a marriage license except in the case of the bride being pregnant, and a Kentucky district court judge has issued an order for the clerk of court to issue the marriage license to the parties.

To obtain a Kentucky marriage license, the parties must complete an application with the following information:

  • Each party's name and address.
  • Each party's date of birth and age.
  • Each party's place of birth.
  • Each party's father's name.
  • Each party's mother's first and maiden name.
  • Each party's current status (single, divorced, annulled, widowed).
  • The number of previous marriages for each party.
  • The occupation of each party.
  • The race of each party.
  • Whether the parties are related (it is not legal for first and second cousins to marry in Kentucky).
  • The anticipated date of marriage.
 

How Can I Get a Copy of a Divorce Record in Kentucky?

Kentucky divorce records

Divorce records in Kentucky are public records, and anyone may obtain a copy.

You will need to complete a copy of the Kentucky Application for a Certified Copy of Divorce Certificate. Then, you may obtain certified copies of a Kentucky divorce decree online, by phone, mail, or in-person.

Kentucky uses VitalChek for online and phone orders. You can contact them at their website or by phone at (800) 241-8322. Payment can be made by credit cards, including American Express, Discover, MasterCard, and Visa. The fee for each certified copy of the divorce certificate is $6, and VitalChek charges additional fees.

You may obtain certified copies in person at:

Office of Vital Statistics
275 East Main Street
Frankfort, KY 40621

To obtain your certified copies by mail, you should submit your application with a copy of your government-issued photo ID and payment by cash or money order to:

Office of Vital Statistics
275 E. Main St., 1E-A
Frankfort, KY 40621

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