Death Certificates

Where do I obtain a death certificate copy for someone who died in New York City?

The New York State Department of Health does not file and cannot issue copies of New York City death certificates. For deaths in one of the five (5) boroughs of New York City (Manhattan, Kings, Queens, the Bronx, and Staten Island), please visit the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene web site. Please note that the borough of Kings is also referred to as Brooklyn and the borough of Staten Island is also referred to as Richmond.

Where do I obtain a death certificate copy for someone who died in New York State outside of New York City?

  • For genealogy or family history copies, please visit our Genealogy web page.
  • For certified death certificate copies, please continue.

Who is eligible to obtain a death certificate copy?

  • The spouse, parent, child or sibling of the deceased
  • Other persons who have a:
    • documented lawful right or claim
    • documented medical need
    • New York State Court Order

What is a lawful right or claim?

If the applicant is not the spouse, parent, child or sibling of the decedent, a lawful right or claim must be documented. An example of a lawful right or claim would be a death record needed by the applicant to claim a benefit. Documentation would consist of an official letter from the agency verifying that to process the claim they require from the applicant a copy of the requested death record.

Identification Requirements - application must be submitted with copies of either A or B:

  1. One (1) of the following forms of valid photo-ID:
    • Driver license
    • State issued non-driver photo-ID card
    • Passport
    • U.S. Military issued photo-ID

  2. Two (2) of the following showing the applicant's name and address:
    • Utility or telephone bills
    • Letter from a government agency dated within the last six (6) months
Important Notes:
  • Failure to include necessary identification will result in rejection of your application.
  • Copy of Passport required in addition to the above ID if request is made from a foreign country that requires a U.S. Passport for travel.

What is the fee for a death certificate copy?

  • The fee is $30.00 per death certificate copy.
  • For Priority Handling: There is an additional fee of $15.00 per death certificate copy. (Total per copy is $45.00)
  • Internet and telephone orders require a major credit card. These orders receive priority handling and the fee is $30.00 + $15.00 priority handling fee for a total of $45.00 per death certificate copy. There is an additional $8.00 vendor processing fee which is charged per transaction (not per copy).
  • Payment of mail order copies may be made by check or money order payable to the New York State Department of Health - Do not send cash.
  • Payment of mail order copies submitted from foreign countries must be made by a check drawn on a United States bank or by international money order - Do not send cash.

How long will it take?

  • Internet or telephone requests receive priority handling and are processed within five (5) to ten (10) business days of receipt. The cost is $45.00 per copy ordered plus $8.00 (per transaction) vendor processing fee. If you chose to have the copy returned to you by UPS overnight delivery, there is an additional UPS fee of $15.50.
  • Mail requests ordered with priority handling ($45.00 per copy ordered) are currently processed within two (2) to four (4) weeks from when they are received. Submitting the application to the Vital Records Processing Center by overnight delivery is recommended. Completed requests will be returned by first class mail unless a prepaid return mailer for overnight delivery is provided with the request.
  • Mail requests ordered with regular handling ($30.00 per copy ordered) are currently processed within ten (10) to twelve (12) weeks from when they are received.

Ordering a death certificate copy

Choose a method of ordering and follow the appropriate link below. You will find ordering information and forms to download.