how to get a death certificate in Idaho

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

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

What are Death Certificates (and Why is it Important to Get an Idaho Death Certificate)?

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

In Idaho, death certificates are completed by a physician, physician assistant, advanced practice registered nurse or coroner, as well as the chief medical officer of the institution in which death occurred.

Idaho 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 Idaho

Idaho’s Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics is in charge of vital records in Idaho.

Idaho has been filing death certificates for those who passed away in Idaho since 1911, although some counties in Idaho may have records prior to 1907.

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare issues certified copies of Idaho death certificates, as well as birth, marriage, and divorce certificates.

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

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

How to Get a Death Certificate in Idaho?

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

How to Get an Idaho Death Certificate by Mail

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

Idaho Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics
PO Box 83720
Boise, ID 83720-0036

The application form is available in English and in Spanish from Idaho Department of Health and Welfare.

The pro of ordering an Idaho death certificate by mail is that it’s convenient, doesn’t require an in-person visit to a the Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics located in Boise, and is cheaper than ordering online.

The cost is $16 for one copy. Payment for mail-in applications can be made by signed check or money order made out to Idaho Vital Records.

The con is that it may take longer to receive the death certificates you’ve ordered, due to mailing time.

How to Get a Idaho Death Certificate by Phone

To order a death certificate by phone in Idaho, you can use the state’s approved 3rd party provider, VitalChek.

The phone number is 866-628-9244 (Option 1).

How to Get an Idaho Death Certificate In Person

Idaho’s Vital Statistics office doesn’t offer in-person service. You can only order an Idaho death certificate by mail, phone, or online.

How to Order an Idaho Death Certificate Online

To order an Idaho death certificate online, you need to order them through an independent company called VitalChek Network Inc.

VitalChek 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 Idaho Department of Health and Welfare cost $16 for one copy, death certificates ordered online through VitalChek cost up to $36.50.

Processing time for online orders is up to 25 business days, plus shipping costs.

Information Required to Obtain a Death Certificate in Idaho

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 Idaho ID requirements for applicants.

Information Required to Request a Death Certificate in Idaho

To order death records in Idaho, you need to provide information about the deceased to help the Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics or VitalCheck find the death record you need.

In Idaho, the following information is required to receive a certified copy of a death certificate:

  • Date of death
  • Location of death (city, state)
  • First, middle, and last name of the deceased
  • Mother’s name
  • Father’s name

Qualifications: Who Can Order a Death Certificate in Idaho

In addition to providing information about the deceased, you’ll need to demonstrate you have a right to access the death certificate.

According to Idaho law, death certificates have “restricted access” for 50 years after someone has died. Only certain people can access restricted Idaho death records, and documentation is required. These people include:

  • Authorized representatives (such as an attorney, physician, funeral director, or a legally designated agent)
  • The person’s spouse, children, parents, grandparents, grandchildren, siblings, or guardian
  • Surviving next-of-kin
  • Idaho attorney general
  • Those listed on a court order

When requesting an Idaho death certificate, you’ll need to provide your name and relationship to the deceased individual, along with documentation that proves your relationship to the deceased, such as a birth certificate (if you are their child) or marriage certificate (if you are their spouse).

You’ll also need to provide an address to which the death certificate should be mailed, and your contact information.

Finally, you need to sign the request.

What ID is Needed to Get Death Certificates in Idaho?

Individuals applying for an Idaho death record need to submit their request along with the appropriate personal identification.

Along with the application, you need to include a valid ID such as one of the following:

  • Driver’s License
  • State ID card
  • Passport
  • Tribal ID card
  • Concealed Weapons Permit
  • Prison ID card

OR Two forms of current ID listed below (one must have a signature):

  • Social Security Card with signature
  • Work ID card with picture or signature
  • Auto registration with signature
  • Traffic ticket with signature
  • Court record with signature
  • College/School ID with picture
  • Matricula card with signature
  • Insurance record
  • Auto insurance
  • Driver Permit
  • Pay stub
  • Hunting/Fishing license
  • Passport card

OR

  • Provide notarized signature and proof of identity form. You can email VR@dhw.idaho.gov for the form
  • Have an immediate family member who has a current and acceptable form of ID from the suggested list request it for you. Please note that proof of relationship may be required

Frequently Asked Questions About Getting an Idaho Death Certificate

How much does an Idaho death record search cost?

Idaho charges $16 for one copy for a death record search. 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 an Idaho death certificate (ordered at the same time), the fee is the same: $16 per copy.

If you choose to order Idaho death records online through VitalChek, it’s more expensive. At the time of writing, VitalChek charges up to $36.50.

Processing time for online orders through 3rd party provider is up to 25 business days for Idaho death records, plus the cost of shipping.

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

Idaho law restricts access to vital records, including death certificates. In Idaho, access to death certificate is restricted for 50 years after a person’s death.

This means only certain people (immediate family or estate representatives) can request a copy, and proof of relationship or eligibility is typically required.

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