Open Public Record Act:
The Connecticut Freedom of Information Act requires that all public agencies must open their meetings to the public and their records subject for review by the public. Public records are any recorded information that relates to the conduct of the public’s business that was created, maintained, or kept by a public agency. However, there are exceptions to the FOI. For example, medical records, criminal investigations, personnel records, litigation records, and trade secrets are some of the types of records that are exempt or not accessible to the public.
The State Vital Records Office at the Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH) is responsible for maintaining a statewide registry of all births that have occurred within the state since July 1, 1897.
You can obtain copies of birth records from this office provided that you are one of the following individuals:
- The registrant (the name on the record) and at least 18 years of age
- The parent, guardian, grandparent, or spouse of the registrant
- The child or grandchild of the registrant, and you are 18 years of age or older
- An attorney-at-law representing the registrant or the registrant’s parent, guardian, child, or surviving spouse
- A state or federal agency employee and have an authorized release from the registrant who is 18 years of age or older
- The Local Director of Health of the town/city where the birth occurred
- The chief elected official of the town/ city where the birth occurred
- A genealogist
If you are eligible to receive the certificate, you can request for a copy via mail or in person. You can also submit a request online through VitalChek, a third party vendor approved by the department. You will need to complete an application form and submit it along with a copy of a valid government-issued photo ID. The cost of a birth certificate is $30. ONly postal money orders or bank checks made payable to the “Treasurer, State of Connecticut” will be accepted. The turnaround time for this type of request is approximately 6 to 8 weeks.
Anyone over 18 years old can request a copy of any Connecticut marriage certificate through the State Vital Records Office. You will be required to provide basic information such as the names of the individuals on the record, the approximate date of marriage, and the town where the event occurred. Unless you are one of the spouses to the marriage, the Social Security numbers of the spouses will not be included on the certificate.
To request a copy of a marriage certificate, you can submit a completed application form in person or by mail. You can also order a copy online through a third party vendor, VitalChek. The cost of a certified copy is $20. Only bank checks and postal money orders made payable to “Treasurer, State of Connecticut” will be accepted.
Divorce decrees are filed in the Judicial District Clerk’s office in the court location where a divorce took place. If you wish to obtain a copy of your divorce decree, you will need to submit your case name and docket number to the Clerk’s office. You will also be required to pay a fee. The cost of a certified copy of a judgment file is $25.
All records of deaths that have occurred in the state of Connecticut since July 1, 1897 are maintained in the State Vital Records Office. You can obtain a copy of a death certificate from this office or through the town where the event occurred.
Anyone can request a copy of a death certificate as long as he/she is over 18 years old. To request for a certified copy, you will need to provide information on the deceased such as his/her name, approximate date of death, and the town where the death happened. For those that require a death certificate with the decedent’s Social Security number, only the surviving spouse, next of kin, Funeral Director, and federal/state agencies authorized by federal law are eligible to receive it.
To request a copy of a death certificate, you can submit an order online through VitalChek, a third party vendor, in person, or via regular mail. You will need to submit a completed application form as well as a postal money order or bank check made payable to “Treasurer, State of Connecticut.” The cost of a death certificate is $20.
If you wish to find your legislators, you can use the application found in the Connecticut General Assembly website. You can enter your street name and town to see a list of the current elected officials in you area. You can also search districts by town or congressional districts. Each legislator shown will have a link to their webpage.