Looking up marriage records online can be done without too many complications if you have the right resources and follow the guidlines. A 100% free online marriage records database doesn’t really exist and the online search options will depend on the state. In this report, I’m going to go over the many ways to its possible to locate online marriage public records databases and hopefully without a credit card need for the search. This will depend on the state or county by the way. I also wanted to mention that because public marriage records are filed at the county level it’s going to be necessary to check on multiple locations. To figure out all possible locations to look at and to make sure nothing is missed go to FreePeopleScan.com and do a scan on any individual to get an overview of their public records at the national level and figure out what possible location to check on. With this information doing a direct state or county search is going to be much easier.
To start the search I’m going to look for state resources by googling keyphrase “.gov texas marriage records”, “.gov florida marriage records”, “.gov new york marriage records”, “.gov california marriage records”, “.gov illinois marriage records”.
Here’s what came up for Texas: https://www.dshs.texas.gov/Vital_Statistics/Verification_of_a_Marriage_or_Divorce.aspx from site “Verification letters are not considered legal substitutes for marriage licenses or divorce decrees. The Vital Statistics Unit strongly recommends that applicants ensure a verification will satisfy its intended use. Certified copies of marriage licenses or divorce decrees are only available from the county clerk (marriage) or district clerk (divorce) in the county or district in which it was obtained. The Vital Statistics Unit provides letters verifying if marriage or divorce was recorded with the State of Texas based on the application for marriage or divorce sent to our office by the county or district clerk. If no record of a marriage is found, the verification letter itself can be considered a “single-status letter,” which some foreign countries accept as legal proof of single status.”
Here’s what came up for Florida: http://www.floridahealth.gov/certificates/certificates/marriage/index.html from site “Marriage licenses from June 6, 1927 to the present are available at this office. Any marriage record prior to June 6, 1927 is obtainable from the county Clerk of Court where the marriage license was issued. Beginning in 1972, the application to marry section was incorporated with the front of the marriage record. The application to marry may be available from the Clerk of Court for events prior to 1972. The fee for a marriage record is $5.00 for one certification and $4.00 for each additional certification of the same record when ordered at the same time. No restrictions exist for ordering these records. The fee is required for a search of our records and is non-refundable, even if the record requested is not located. In such a case, a certified “not found” statement will be provided. Duplicate copy fees for records “not found” may be refunded if the applicant sends a letter of request.”
Here’s what came up for New York: https://www.health.ny.gov/vital_records/ from the site “New York State Vital Records web site. The Vital Records Section of the New York State Department of Health files certificates for births and deaths that occur in New York State outside of New York City and for marriage licenses issued in New York State outside of New York City. Also on file are divorce records for all of New York State since 1963. The Vital Records Section provides qualified applicants with certified copies of the certificates associated with these events. Uncertified copies of older certificates are available for genealogy research.”
Here’s what came up for California: https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CHSI/Pages/Obtaining-Certified-Copies-Online.aspx from the site “The California Department of Public Health — Vital Records (CDPH-VR) does not accept online orders. However, there are independent, third-party companies that process online requests for certified copies of vital records. When using online services provided by an independent company, they may charge a processing fee on all orders. That fee is in addition to the certified copy fee.”
Here’s what came up for illinois: http://www.dph.illinois.gov/topics-services/birth-death-other-records/marriage-records from site “The Division of Vital Records can verify the facts of a marriage that has taken place from 1962 through the current index date available. The facts of a marriage include: names, dates of birth, date of event, and city/county of event. Verifications cost $5 and can be requested by mail, by fax, or in person.”
Most state’s I looked into have a way to look up marriage records one but some will restrict who can obtain a certification. So states also have options of getting these records via mail or walk-ins with a small fee like in Texas and Illinois $5 a record it’s not exactly free but its pretty close to free. It’s not perfect but that’s what we have to work with brought to you by your local state government.