Vital Records General Information

The Division of Vital Records of the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene issues certified copies of birth, death, fetal death, and marriage certificates for events that occur in Maryland. The Division also provides divorce verifications and information on procedures for registering an adoption, legitimation, or an adjudication of paternity. 

For a recorded message about birth, death, or marriage certificates, call 410-764-3038 (Baltimore local) or 1-800-832-3277 (toll-free).

The Division of Vital Records is open from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm, Mon-Fri. Offices are closed on State holidays:
Division of Vital Records Holidays: 2016
January 1 (Friday) New Year's Day
January 18 (Monday) Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Birthday* (obs)
February 15 (third Monday) Presidents' Day
May 30 (Monday) Memorial Day
July 4 (Monday) Independence Day
September 5 (first Monday) ​Labor Day
October 10 (Monday) Columbus Day* (obs)
November 8 (Tuesday) Presidential Election Day
November 11 (Friday) Veterans' Day
November 24 (fourth Thursday) Thanksgiving Day
November 25 (fourth Friday) American Indian Heritage Day
December 26 (Monday) Christmas Day (obs)

*If the U.S. Congress designates another day for observance, the day named by Congress becomes the legal date. If a holiday falls on a Saturday, it is observed the Friday before. If the holiday falls on a Sunday, the observance is on the following Monday.

LENGTH OF WAIT: 

  • Turnaround time for a certificate ordered by mail: 3-4 weeks.
  • Turnaround time for processing certificate changes: 6-8 weeks.
  • Turnaround time for processing adoptions: 6-8 weeks.
  • Turnaround time for processing birth certificate changes to sex designation: 6-10 weeks (customers applying in person will not receive a new certificate the same day).
  • Exceptions: Records of births that took place in Baltimore City from 1875 through 1910 are not available for same day service. Copies of these records can only be mailed and take approximately two weeks to process. Birth records over 100 years are available through the Maryland State Archives located at 350 Rowe Boulevard in Annapolis. Telephone number 410-260-6400.​

FEES*:

Fees vary depending on type of certificate and type of service requested. If a record cannot be located, the certificate fee is not refunded and a Certification of Record Search will be provided.

If you wish to obtain a copy of a certificate from a local health department, please be advised that you may be charged a processing fee in addition to the certificate fee. Please check with the local health department in your jurisdiction for more information on additional charges.

*The Department does not collect a fee for:

  • a copy of a certificate of a current or former armed forces member that is requested by the member; or
  • a copy of a certificate of a current or former armed forces member or of a surviving spouse or child of the member, if the copy will be used in connection with a claim for a dependent or beneficiary of the member.