Sample Divorce Certificate for the US States


A divorce certificate is an important document. This official vital record documenting the divorce of a couple is kept by a government entity. In the US, by “divorce certificate” it means the certified replica copy of the original divorce document. At times it is also referred to the original divorce document which is kept by the issuing US state or county government.

How to obtain divorce certificate

Once your divorce is over, you need to obtain the copy of your divorce certificate. To get a copy of your divorce certificate, you need to go to the vital statistics office in the state or area where your divorce proceedings took place.

It is important to bear in mind that that not all of the US states’ vital record departments are given the responsibility of maintaining divorce records.  In certain US States you can get a copy of your divorce certificate from the local county office or town municipality. In some US states, individuals can come directly to the office or request through the mail to get a copy of divorce certificate. You can also order divorce certificates by fax or phone but this facility is available in very limited US states.

Nowadays, the easiest and best way to get a divorce certificate is through online. Most of the US states offer the facility of online delivery of divorce certificates. In some US states, you can get a divorce certificate using a credit card. 

Information Mentioned on Divorce Certificates

Divorce certificates contain all the important information in regards to the terms and conditions to a particular divorce case. Here you can find the date and place of divorce took place, along with the reasons behind the divorce.  Here you can also find useful information regarding divorce settlements, child custody, and spousal support and so on.

Uses for Divorce Certificates

Divorce certificates are required for following uses:

  • With a divorce certificate you cannot obtain another marriage license. 
  • This legal document is necessary to show non-compliance of those involved in the divorce in regards to alimony, child support, custody rights and so on.

Apart from this, there are also certain genealogy uses of divorce certificates. Divorce certificates are used during genealogy research. When one analyses the divorce certificates, all the details related to a divorce case can be noticed. It can even give hints regarding the personality and temperament of the individuals and throw light on how the marriage was. Also you cannot ignore the fact that due to the time and effort required to make a divorce certificate, it is also used as a very reliable source of information regarding divorce statistics of any State or the country as a whole.

There are certain things that you need to bear in mind to make sure you receive an accurate record for your request.

Some of the few things include:

  • Make your letters concise and to the point.
  • Never make the mistake of making more than one or two requests at a time.
  • Do not write confusing details of your family lines.
  • Type or print all names and addresses in your letter.
  • Provide complete information on an individual and event for which you need documents.
  • Always provide an S.A.S.E., (Self Addressed Stamped Envelope).
  • Be sure and include information such as date of request, full name of husband (last name in caps), full name of wife (maiden name in caps), date of divorce or annulment, place of divorce (city or town, county, state), the type of final decree, relationship to parties, the purpose for which the record is needed, requestor’s name & address, requestor’s driver’s license number & state (some counties require it) and requestor’s signature.
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Here is a video that offers clear and detailed information about the certificate of divorce for Alabama.

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The federal government does not distribute divorce certificates and hence you need to visit your states’ vital record department that maintains divorce records to get your own copy of divorce certificate.

The links below can help you to have direct access to individual state and territory information. To make it easy for your, first determine the state or area where your divorce occurred, then click on that state or area.


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