HOW TO OBTAIN A CERTIFIED COPY OF A DEATH CERTIFICATE AND WHO CAN OBTAIN A DEATH CERTIFICATE
Please note you cannot obtain a sealed death certificate from the Surrogate’s Court.
- Death Certificates are obtained in the township/municipality/city of the decedent’s death.
- Funeral homes may get the death certificate issued in the township/city where their funeral home is located if the decedent was a resident of that township city.
- The registrar would then forward to the township were the death occurred.
- Trenton also has a copy.
- Many times a “Resident copy” is sent to the township/city where the decedent had lived. The registrar is really not supposed to issue a sealed copy from that “Resident copy”
How To Obtain a Certified Copy of a Death Certificate
- Certified copies of Death certificates are available from Local Registrars for the municipality where the death occurred.
- For contact information for each of the municipalities of Salem County see below.
- The State Bureau of Vital Statistics and Registration maintains death certificates from 1878 to the present.
- You can obtain a certified copy of a death certificate online, by written request, or in person.
- Details of these services can be reviewed at http://www.state.nj.us/health/vital/
- For copies of vital records from 1848 to 1877, please contact:
New Jersey Department of State
Division of Archives and Records Management
PO Box 307
Trenton, NJ 08625-0307
Or call 609-292-4087
Who Can Obtain Certified Copies of Death Certificates
Pursuant to Executive Order No. 18 signed by Governor James E. McGreevey on April 24, 2002, a State or local Registrar may issue a certified copy of a vital record only to persons who establish themselves as the subject of the vital record, the subject’s parent, legal guardian or legal representative, spouse/civil union partner, child, grandchild or sibling, if of legal age, a State or Federal agency for official purposes, pursuant to court order or under other emergent circumstances as determined by the Commissioner. To review the entire executive Order go to www.state.nj.us/infobank/circular/eom18.shtml
LAST REVIEWED NOVEMBER 2022. (please be sure to check the state website for more recent modifications)
NJ OFFICE OF VITAL STATISTICS AND REGISTRY:
1-866-649-8726 toll-free nationwide
ONLINE ORDERS FOR COPIES OF VITAL RECORDS:
For more information about ordering online: 877-622-7549
REGULAR ORDERS TO BE SUBMITTED BY POSTAL MAIL:
New Jersey Department of Health
Office of Vital Statistics and Registry
PO Box 370
Trenton, NJ 08625-0370
REGULAR ORDERS TO BE SUBMITTED BY EXPRESS MAIL:
New Jersey Office of Vital Statistics and Registry
Attn: Customer Service Unit
H & A Bldg, 5th Floor
Warren and Market Streets
Trenton, NJ 08625
IN PERSON ORDERS:
New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services
Office of Vital Statistics and Registry
140 East Front Street
Hours of Operation: 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Monday – Friday
Excluding State Holidays
For applications received after 3:30 p.m., records will be mailed the next business day.
LAST REVIEWED NOVEMBER 2022.
Please be sure to check the state website for the most recent modification of their information: http://www.state.nj.us/health/vital/
DETERMINE WHAT TYPE OF VITAL RECORD MEETS YOUR NEEDS
- Certified copies have the raised seal of the office issuing the record and are always issued on State of New Jersey safety paper. Certified copies may be used to establish identity and are legal documents.
- Certifications are issued on plain paper with no seal and clearly indicate they are not valid for establishing identity or for legal purposes. Certifications are generally only useful for genealogy. Certifications of death records do not contain the Social Security Number or the Cause of Death medical terminology.
- Getting an Apostille Seal – An Apostille Seal is an additional seal required for certain certified records that will be presented to a foreign government that is a member of the Hague Treaty. Also, the seal is often required on documents for international adoptions or establishing dual citizenship. Contact the consulate of the country involved to determine if you need an Apostille Seal.To get a record with an Apostille Seal, first obtain a certified copy of the vital record from the Office of Vital Statistics and Registry. Indicate on your application that it will need an Apostille Seal, and you will receive a certified copy of the vital record with the original signature of the State Registrar or Assistant State Registrar. You must forward this document to the New Jersey Department of Treasury, which issues the Apostille Seal.