how to get a death certificate in Connecticut

How to Get a Death Certificate in Connecticut: Everything You Need to Know

Everything you need to know about accessing death records in Connecticut. All the information you need to submit your request, plus who can access a Connecticut death certificate, the cost, and how to get started.

What are Death Certificates (and Why is it Important to Get a Connecticut Death Certificate)?

Connecticut death certificates are legal documents, issued by the Connecticut State Department of Public Health, that record the date, location, and cause of a person’s death that occurred within Connecticut.

In Connecticut, death certificates are completed by a licensed funeral director or embalmer, with the medical portion being filled out by medical professionals (physician, advanced practice registered nurses, physician assistant, or pathologist).

Connecticut law requires all deaths that occur within the state be registered via a death certificate within 5 days of the death.

Even though families and estate representatives typically require multiple copies of a loved one’s death certificate to manage their estate, you won’t automatically receive copies, and need to ask.

Most often, you can request death certificates from the funeral director. It’s prudent to request up to 10 copies when someone passes in order to close accounts and wrap up their estate.

If you need additional death certificates, or didn’t receive copies from the funeral director, you can request them via the vital records office.

Vital Records Offices in Connecticut

Connecticut’s Department of Public Health is in charge of vital records in Connecticut.

Connecticut has been keeping state-wide death records for those who passed away in Connecticut since 1897. Prior to 1897, some town clerks kept death records for the people who lived in their town. Today, each of the state’s 169 towns still operates a vital records office!

The Connecticut State Department of Public Health issues certified copies of Connecticut death certificates, as well as birth, marriage, and divorce certificates.

You can only get a vital record in Connecticut for an event that occurred in Connecticut.

In other words, you can only get a Connecticut death certificate for a person who died in Connecticut. If they were a Connecticut resident, but passed away out-of-state, you won’t be able to get a death certificate from Connecticut.

How to Get a Death Certificate in Connecticut?

Connecticut death certificates can be ordered by mail, by phone, or online using an approved third-party provider.

How to Get a Connecticut Death Certificate by Mail

To order a State death certificate by mail in Connecticut, print and fill out the application form, and mail it (along with the fee or payment information) to:

Connecticut Department of Public Health
Vital Records Section
Customer Services, MS # 11 VRS
Hartford, CT 06134-0308

You can also order a death certificate from the town vital records office. To find the town mailing address, refer to the Town Vital Records Directory on the Department of Public Health’s Vital Records.

The application form for State death certificates and the application form for Town death certificates are both available from the Connecticut State Department of Public Health.

The pro of ordering a Connecticut death certificate by mail is that it’s convenient, doesn’t require an in-person visit to the State Vital Records office located in Hartford, and is cheaper than ordering online. The cost is $20 for each copy.

For State applications, payment for mail-in applications can be made by money order made payable to “Treasurer, State of CT.” Personal checks are not accepted.

For Town applications, payment for mail-in applications can be made by a money order made payable to the city or town of death. Personal checks are not accepted..

The con of ordering a certificate via the mail is that it may take longer to receive the death certificates you’ve ordered, due to mailing time.

How to Get a Connecticut Death Certificate by Phone

To order a death certificate by phone in Connecticut, you can use the state’s approved 3rd party provide, VitalCheck.

The phone number is 866-809-0839.

VitalCheck charges additional fees above the state or town fees of $20 per copy.

How to Get a Connecticut Death Certificate In Person

To order a death certificate in person in Connecticut, you have two options.

First, you can go to the town vital records office where the death occurred or where the certificate holder resided at the time of death. You can find the town directory on the CPDPH website. Payment can be made by a money order made out to the City or Town you’re visiting. It’s probably worth calling ahead to make sure they accept walk-ins and are open, and to confirm payment details.

Alternatively, you can go to the State Vital Records Office:

410 Capitol Avenue, 1st Floor
Hartford, CT 06106

The State office is open 8:00am to 4pm Monday through Fridays (closed on holidays). You’ll need photo ID to be allowed into the building.

The phone number is (860) 509-7770 (Customer Service).

For in-person visits, the State Vital Records office can issue a certified copy of the death certificate within 4 to 6 weeks. Note that the processing time may depend on state’s current queue of requests.

Before going in person, it’s helpful to fill out the application form, and ensure you have all the required documentation and ID.

Payment can be made by money order, made payable to “Treasurer, State of CT.”

The cost for ordering in-person is $20 per copy.

How to Order a Connecticut Death Certificate Online

To order a Connecticut death certificate online, you need to order them through an independent company called VitalCheck Network Inc.

VitalCheck Network accepts major credit cards for payment, and offers the option to choose UPS for faster shipping, and for an additional fee.

While death certificates ordered directly through the Connecticut State Department of Public Health cost $20 per copy, death certificates ordered online through VitalCheck cost between $27 and $33, plus shipping.

Processing time for online orders through 3rd party provider is up to 25 business days, plus shipping times.

Information Required to Obtain a Death Certificate in Connecticut

To get a copy of an existing death certificate, you need to:

  • Provide enough relevant information about the deceased to ensure the state is able to locate relevant death records.
  • Demonstrate you have a right to access access the death certificate.
  • Meet Connecticut ID requirements for applicants.

Information Required to Request a Death Certificate in Connecticut

To order death records in Connecticut, you need to provide information about the deceased to help the Department of Public Health or VitalCheck find the death record you need.

In Connecticut, the following information is required to receive a certified copy of a death certificate from either the state or the town:

  • First, middle, and last name of the deceased
  • Sex
  • Date of death
  • Town of death
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Father’s name
  • Mother’s name
  • If married, the spouse’s full name

The application form will also ask for your personal and contact information, plus your relationship to the deceased.

Qualifications: Who Can Order a Death Certificate in Connecticut

In Connecticut, only certain people can access a death certificate with the deceased’s social security number listed on it:

  • Surviving spouse
  • Next of kin
  • Funeral director who is acting on behalf of an eligible family member

In addition to providing information about the deceased in the application form, you’ll need to demonstrate you have a right to access a death certificate with SSN, if that’s what you’re requesting.

If you don’t have a right to access the death certificate with SSN, or you cannot prove you have the right to it, you’ll be given a certificate without the SSN listed.

Frequently Asked Questions About Getting a Connecticut Death Certificate

How much does a Connecticut death record search cost?

Connecticut charges $20 per copy for a death certificate. After paying the fee, you’ll get either one certified copy of the death certificate. If they can’t find the death certificate you’re after, you may get a “failure to find” certificate.

For each additional copy of a Connecticut death certificate (ordered at the same time), the fee is the same: $20 per copy.

If you choose to order Connecticut death records online through VitalChek, it’s more expensive. At the time of writing, VitalChek charges up to $32.95, plus the cost of shipping.

Can anyone obtain a copy of a death certificate in Connecticut, or only certain individuals?

Connecticut law restricts access to vital records, including death certificates, to adults 18 years of older.

Any adult can get a Connecticut death certificate. However, only certain people can get a death certificate that has the deceased’s SSN listed on the certificate:

  • Surviving spouse
  • Next of kin
  • Funeral director who is acting on behalf of an eligible family member

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