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Rhode Island Death Records: How to Find Death Records in Rhode Island?

by Iris Rj D.

How to Find Death Records in Rhode Island, Rhode Island Death Records

How to Find Death Records in Rhode Island?

The Rhode Island Department of Health has a division called the Office of Vital Records that preserves and issues all death records, which have taken place in Rhode Island. However, the Department of Health in Rhode Island only maintains records of all deaths in the last 50 years. Also, it is the department’s responsibility to manage, issue, and file all marriage, and birth records in the state of Rhode Island.

The Vital Records Office situated in the county or the city of Rhode Island where the death took place maintains most of the Rhode Island state records. However, the Vital Records State Office preserves a copy of every death record preserved by the counties and cities. It is not so tough to obtain a copy of a death record in the state of Rhode Island. At the same time, you can only obtain the death record of a person if you are the decedent’s immediate family member or have some kind of tangible interest. It is possible to request and get a death record in Rhode Island online, by mail or apply in-person.

How to find death records in RI
Restrictions to access records in Rhode Island

The state does not impose any kind of restrictions on procuring a copy of a death certificate that took place at least 50 years ago. However, to get a copy of a death record that took place less than fifty years ago, a person has to:

1. Name of the person on the death certificate

2. An immediate family member of the deceased

3. The dead person’s authorized agent or his/her guardian

4. Any individual needing details to protect or ascertain a property or personal right

5. Title examiners, attorneys-at-law or genealogical societies who are performing their official responsibilities

6. People who have been awarded court orders directing the registrar to produce the document

rhode island Public death records
Ways of obtaining certified death records in Rhode Island

1. Apply in-person


It is the first method to request for procuring public death records Rhode Island. You can make an in-person application for the death record required by you. To do so, go to the nearest Rhode Island Vital Records Office, fill up the application form. Submit the completed application form along with a fee of 20 USD.

2. Apply by mail

In Rhode Island, you can also apply for a copy of the death record by mail. However, to request for the death record by mail you have to fill up the application form and send the form by mail along with your valid photo identification copy. You have to also mail a check or a pay order as the fee. Typically, these public records requests in Rhode Island are processed within five working days.

3. Order online death records in Rhode Island

It is the final way to request and get a copy of the death record in the state of Rhode Island. Rhode Island death records online can be accessed by making an online request to the RI Department of Health’s State Office of Vital Records. You can do so by going to the Department of Health’s website and then going through the guidelines mentioned there.

Apart from the above-mentioned ways of procuring copies of Rhode Island death records, people can also request and get their desired copies online via certain public databases. In Rhode Island, a majority of the records are available at the office of the town or city clerk from 1960 to the present. All cities and towns of the state also archive records for death records that are filed in that locality. In Rhode Island, the state office also maintains electronic copies of all records.

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