Iowa Department of Public Health, Bureau of Health Statistics UPDATED January 1, 2020
Do not use any unapproved third party vendor to obtain this form. Do not pay a fee for this form.
This form is available to print at no cost at https://idph.iowa.gov/health-statistics
Information about requesting a certified copy of an IOWA Birth, Death or Marriage Record
What records are available?
In Iowa, vital record registration began July 1, 1880. Event must have occurred in IOWA. Records older than July 1, 1880 are not on file.
Where are records held?
Original vital records that were registered are on file with the Iowa Department of Public Health, Bureau of Health Statistics. Vital records are
also available for request at local county registrar offices in Iowa.
What records are open for public inspection?
The state vital record system is closed to public inspection. However, birth, marriage and death records may be inspected as of right under
Iowa Code section 22 when in the custody of the county registrar. IAC 144.43
The following is required when applying for a certified copy of an Iowa vital record:
1) Completed application that is legible and clearly identifies the event record and establishes entitlement to the record requested.
2) Applicant’s current government issued photo identification (copy if sent by mail).
3) Payment in the amount of $15 for EACH certified copy requested. Fees payable in U.S. funds by check or money order. Cash
accepted in person ONLY.
4) SIGNATURE MUST BE NOTARIZED ON THE APPLICATION WHEN SUBMITTING VIA MAIL.
Who is entitled to the record?
Entitled persons include the person named on the record or that person’s spouse, children, legal parents, grandparents, grandchildren,
siblings, or legal representative or guardian. Legal guardians, legal representatives, and siblings must also provide additional proof of
What is the fee?
The fee for a certified copy of a vital record in Iowa is $15 each. Fees are payable in U.S. funds by check or money order to the issuing
registrar’s office. Fees must be paid at the time of the application.
What is the process to exchange the small wallet-sized birth cards?
Any pink/blue wallet sized birth certificates issued between 1993 and 2009 can be exchanged for no fee. Follow all instructions above for
applying for a vital record in Iowa. The original pink/blue wallet birth certificate may be returned along with a completed application and proof
of ID (current government issued photo identification) to any issuing office in Iowa. If the wallet-sized birth certificate is not exchanged,
applications must be sent to the state office at the address listed below.
What if the order is not received in the mail?
If the requested documents are not received within 30 days, contact the issuing office. Requested documents cannot be replaced at no fee after 90
days of issuance.
WAYS TO ORDER FROM THE IOWA DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH OR COUNTY RECORDER
Telephone: Customers may call VitalChek toll-free at 1-866-809-0290 from 6:00 am CST through 7:00 pm CST, Monday through Friday,
except for holidays. An additional processing fee will apply. Customers may call the bureau directly at 515-281-4944 to speak to state staff.
In-person: Applications may be made in-person at the Bureau of Health Statistics, 321 E. 12
Street, Des Moines, Iowa, from 7:00 a.m. to
4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except for state-observed holidays. All application requirements noted above will apply. Applications may
also be made in person at the county recorder offices. Visit
https://idph.iowa.gov/health-statistics for a full list of records held at county
Postal service: Written requests and fees may be mailed to the address below. All application requirements noted above will apply.
Genealogy requests may take up to 60 business days for processing, regardless of the method of application, and will be mailed to applicants.
Commemorative Certificates – Information regarding commemorative certificates is available at idph.iowa.gov/health-statistics
Iowa Department of Public Health
Bureau of Health Statistics
Lucas State Office Building
Floor, 321 E. 12
Des Moines, Iowa 50319-0075
SEE OTHER SIDE FOR AN APPLICATION FORM.
FORM MAY BE USED FOR APPLICATION AT THE BUREAU OF HEALTH STATISTICS OR COUNTY RECORDER OFFICES.