Minnesota Vital Records
Minnesota Vital Records
In the state of Minnesota, the maintenance of vital records relating to a person’s most important life events is taken care of by the Office of Vital Statistics. These live events can include births, deaths, marriages and divorces. The documents involved can also include birth certificates, death certificates, marriage license, marriage certificates, divorce records and more. These documents are all stored in some central registry in order to be used for statistical analysis.
A divorce record is issued by the government when the divorce or annulment is completed and registered. When a married couple files for a divorce or annulment, and the event is registered and confirmed, divorce records are kept with other state records. The documents can include divorce certificates, divorce decrees, and divorce records. It depends on the state whether these documents are available for public viewing. There was a divorce rate of 2.8 per 1,000 inhabitants back in 2004. Divorce records cost $10 per certified copy.
Marriage records are handed out by government officials once the marriage is registered. Unfortunately, there is no existing centralized registration for marriage records in Minnesota. There is however a state-wide index from 1958 to present day. The majority of the state’s counties began gathering marriage records from the creation of said county. Some date as far back as the 1840s. Some microfilm records are available at the Family History Library for these records. Marriage records in the state are kept at the Minnesota Vital Records Office. There was a marriage rate of 5.6 per 1,000 inhabitants in 2016. Marriage records cost $8 per certified copy.
Birth certificates are the documents issued upon the birth of every child, and can refer to a certified copy of the original document. Birth records are divided into two distinct categories in Minnesota, before 1908 and after 1908. All records pre-1908 were collected from church or county records, which are the earliest recordings of births in the state. The state-wide registration of births didn’t come in until 1905, and was complied with by 1915. There were 69,183 births in Minnesota in 2013. Certified birth certificate copies cost $26 per copy.
Death records usually refer to the copy of information from a person’s death certificate after they pass away. Death records are also split into two categories, before 1908 and after 1908. Most counties began collecting records as early as 1870. However, Benton County started collecting records from 1867. Compliance for state-wide death records was tricky in the early years. Microfilm records can be found at the Family History Library dating back to around 1925. There were over 40,000 deaths in Minnesota in 2013. Death records cost $13 per copy.
Why are these records available to the public?
The state legislature in Minnesota passed the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act in 1991. The latest amendment came in 2004. This ensured that every resident of the state had the right to access public records whenever they want. All records maintained by both the state and local government can be accessed and copied by the public.
For birth and death records:
Minnesota Department of Health
Central Cashiering – Vital Records
P.O. Box 64499
St Paul, MN 55164
Phone: (651) 201-5970
For divorce and marriage records:
410 S. 5th Street
County Government Center
Mankato, MN 56001
Phone: (507) 304-4340