Death Certificates - Minnesota Dept. of Health

Death Certificates

Due to the ongoing pandemic, MDH has reassigned many OVR staff to the agency Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) response. For faster service, make your request in person or by mail at a Minnesota county vital records office or order online through VitalChek - Minnesota Death Certificates.

On this page:
Where do I buy a Minnesota death certificate?
General death certificate information
I want to change the death certificate
Fees and payment
Office of Vital Records processing times

Where do I buy a Minnesota death certificate?

You have three options:

  • From any Minnesota county vital records office.

    Check with the county office close to you about their services during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. County offices may print a death certificate order while you wait.

If you need to change a death record before you buy a certificate, read our Change a Death Record webpage.

  • From VitalChek - Minnesota Death Certificates.

    VitalChek is a secure vital records processing service. Several Minnesota county vital records offices offer the choice of ordering and paying for certificates online through VitalChek. You may order certificates for births or deaths that occurred in any Minnesota county. VitalChek charges an added fee for this service, and accepts all major credit cards. We do not endorse any other internet ordering service.

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General death certificate information

Before you can buy a death certificate, the funeral director must record the legal facts of death. The legal facts include the date, time, and place the death occurred, and information to identify the person who died. Then, a medical professional adds the cause and manner of death to complete the death record. Sometimes, this step may mean a longer wait for a death certificate.

Funeral home access to death certificates (PDF)

The Office of Vital Records keeps records of deaths that occur in the state of Minnesota. State death records start in 1908. Death records from before 1908 are available only from the vital records office in the county where the death occurred.

For information about vital events records in other states, see Where to Write for Vital Records on the CDC website.

I want to change the death certificate

Visit our Change a Death Record to learn how to request changes to a death record.

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Fees and Payment


  • One death certificate costs $13.
  • Fees for death certificates are the same at all vital records offices statewide.
  • Vital records offices will not process requests for certificates without payment in full.
  • Your payment must cover the certificates and services you request.
  • Payment options vary from county to county. Some counties may not accept payment by credit card.
  • Fees are non-refundable. Minnesota Statutes, section 144.226

Office of Vital Records

The Office of Vital Records does not have a service window; send your application and payment by fax or mail.

Sign your application form in front of a notary public before you send your request. The Office of Vital Records returns request forms that do not have a notary signature and stamp or seal. We also return incomplete forms or forms not paid in full at the time of application.

The Office of Vital Records accepts payment by credit card (MasterCard, VISA, or Discover). We also take checks or money orders. Make your check or money order payable to Minnesota Department of Health. We deposit the payments we receive upon receipt.

Office of Vital Records processing times

As of October 12, 2021, the Office of Vital Records is mailing death certificates from applications received on or before:

  • October 8, 2021 - regular processing
  • October 8, 2021 - rush processing

The Office of Vital Records deposits fees the same day it receives them; this is before we complete your request.

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How are we doing?

Updated Tuesday, 12-Oct-2021 13:39:59 CDT