Frequently Asked Questions

Have a question about your death certificate order or availability? You might find the answer to your question below! Use the line below to search by keyword(s) or scroll down to browse.


Questions about what we have and what we don't.


Can you email that? Can I cancel this? Apostille? Certify? Maiden name vs. married name? Can you do xyz for me? Find out!


Problem with your order? Maybe we can answer your question here. Or by phone or email.


A: We have the following death certificates in our collection:

  • Ohio Death Certificates from December 20, 1908-1970
  • Stillborn Death Certificates from December 20, 1908-1935 and 1942-1953
  • Columbus Death Certificates from 1904-1908

    A: Between 1867 and December 19, 1908, death records were recorded at the county level as line entries in ledgers, not as certificates. The Ohio History Connection has copies of the death records for some counties on microfilm. Please see our Death Records Research Guide to determine if we have records for the county you need.

    If we have it, you can then submit a Public Records Copy Request for $18 by mail. If we do not hold records for the county in question, you will need to contact the probate court or county archives/records center of that county.

    A: No. We only have death certificates for people who died in Ohio.

    For Ohio soliders killed-in-action, contact the National Archives, as they are federal records.

    A: Many of the names in the database were transcribed and imported using a computerized process from the original, poor-quality paper indexes. Volunteers have been manually inputting missing information and correcting computer-generated errors. A typical year has 80,000 death certificates, so it is a slow process.

    If you would like to help with this project, you can come to the Archives & Library to input data. For more information, please contact our Volunteer Office.


    A: Yes. We are now automatically sending all death certificate copies as digital images by email. For quality control purposes, some orders take longer to process than you may be used to from us. You should still receive your order in the posted 1-2 weeks as noted in the ordering information at

    A: Yes. Please click the button to request a paper copy when you place the order online or put a note on your order form if ordering by mail.

    A: Typically you should receive your order within two weeks, but it may take longer due to high order volumes, processing times, holidays, and, if requesting a paper copy. the United States Postal Service’s workload. We are unable to expedite the handling or shipping of orders. Please contact if you have not received your certificate four weeks after you placed the order.

    A: We are happy to cancel your order if we have not already processed it. Orders are often processed within 24 hours of receipt, so please cancel them quickly.

    A: Due to our large number of requests and staff availability, we are unable to provide that service.

    A: The State of Ohio contracts with Ohio History Connection, a private, non-profit organization, to act as the state archives. While they provide tax money to us to cover our costs for storing and preserving the records, state law permits charging fees to cover our costs in providing copies of records. This includes the staff time to research, retrieve, copy, and mail copies and the costs of the actual physical parts of the process, including microfilm readers/printers and copiers, paper, envelopes, and postage.

    A: Since we did not create the original documents, we cannot legally certify them. If you need a certified copy, please contact the public health department or probate court in the county of death.

    A: No, only the Ohio Secretary of State can apostille records. Vist Ohio Secretary of State for information. You will need a certified copy for this process.

    A: Please confirm what qualifies as verification with the society. Many organizations, such as the Daughters of the American Revolution, only require a stamp saying that it came from our collections. We are happy to send stamped, paper copies on request (non-legal purposes only); we cannot legally certify a record. Please ask for a stamped copy when placing your order. Please click the button to receive a paper copy during the ordering process.

      A: Yes, as long as we have not already processed your order. Please send an e-mail to to let us know of any changes. It is not unusual for us to have orders processed within 24 hours of receipt, so please let us know as soon as possible.

      A: Our fees are based on the staff time involved in processing the orders; we can only look up a single spelling of the last name for the basic $14 copy fee.

    A: Death certificates are issued under the legal last name of a woman at the time of death. For most married, widowed, or divorced women during the time span for which we hold records, it's often her married name.

    A: In order to process a request for a basic $14 death certificate copy request, we need to know the name and death year, plus one of the following: county of death, exact death date (month and year), or death certificate number.

    Yes. Please note: Only Ohio Death Certificate copies from the following ranges are available through this page:
    • Ohio Death Certificates from December 20, 1908-1953
    • Stillborn Death Certificates from December 20, 1908-1935

    Enter information to request one or more copies of a death certificate. Required fields are First Name, Last Name, and Year. In addition, at least one of the following three fields is required: Month/Day, County, or Certificate number.

    If we cannot find a close match to your request, we will provide a copy of the original index page showing the names surrounding the name you provided. Your fee covers the cost of this search.

    Please only use this form for certificates not found in the online index. Certificates found in the online index may be ordered through your shopping bag in the upper right-hand corner of the page. Click here for a guide to walk you through the ordering process.


    A: No. The fee covers the staff time involved in processing the order for you and the expenses involved in making a copy and mailing it out.

    A: No. The fee covers the staff time involved in processing the order for you and the expenses involved in making and mailing the copy.

    A: There are rare occasions when a death certificate accidentally got left out when the Ohio Death Index was originally compiled. We suggest that you contact the probate court or public health department of the county of death to get a copy of the death certificate.

    If you would prefer, we can also manually search through every single death certificate for the county and month of death. The fee for that service is $25 per hour. There is always a possibility that the State of Ohio never received their copy of the death certificate from the county in the first place, so your chances of finding it are better through the county.

    A: Sometimes a mistake or omission was made on the original form. The Ohio Department of Vital Statistics would either stamp them as “returned” or paste a smaller form onto the front asking for clarification. The certificate would be sent back to the county for correction. The county would either make the corrections on the original form or return a corrected copy. We send all of the copies of a certificate and forms that were included in this process.

    Other times, part of the certificate was filled out in light ink and the rest in dark ink. When that happens, we are often unable to get a clear copy of the whole certificate using a single darkness setting. In that case, we make two copies on different darkness settings so that between the two, the entire certificate is readable.

    A: The back of the certificate only contains printed information on how to fill out the form, except in extremely rare circumstances. We do send a copy of the back if we see a note on the front indicating that there is more information. When there is additional information on the back, it is typically details about how or where an accidental death occurred, not genealogical information.

    A: Yes, but only for deaths from December 20, 1908-1953. Please send an email to with the correction(s) to be made for that time period. We do not have the legal authority to make changes to the index from 1954-1970.

    A: We cannot make changes directly to the original certificate or the microfilm/digital copies. However, if you personally knew the deceased, you can submit a notarized affidavit with the correction(s). That document will be kept on file in the State Archives office. Contact for more information.

    You can download a copy of the affidavit here [.pdf format].