Dead men tell no tales, but death records can sure say a lot. They have come a long way since their humble beginning back at the turn of the 20th century. Today, public death records form the set of vital public records jointly with birth, divorce and marriage records. Public records are much like reputation, you own it but you don’t really have a say in it.
The details surrounding the death such as time and place of death, burial and funeral information, personal particulars of the deceased and some degree of his spouse’s, children’s and parents’ are found in people’s public death records. It’s also customary to put up an obituary alongside the death notice especially if the deceased was a distinguished figure in his lifetime and obituaries often show up as part of death records.
Some of the information contained in public death records is actually quite private and people are known to be sensitive about it https://www.tragedyinfo.com/richard-pryor-death-obituary-richard-pryor-cause-of-death/ . That’s why there can be restrictions on their accessibility and use, the records being public records notwithstanding. Other than that, they are by and large freely available from government agencies and private sources alike.
People make use of public death records for a multitude of reasons and purposes most predominant of which are catching up on long lost friends, tracing family trees and researching specific individuals. They are also widely used in Genealogy and other historical studies and are a primary resource for the Police and other enforcement bodies in their criminal investigation work.
Different states have different laws governing the access and use of public death records. Furthermore, the death record databases of the various states are not linked. That means if it is not known which state precisely is the subject’s state of residence, a state by state search would have to be conducted in order for the search to be exhaustive. Having that said, records within each state however are uploaded onto a central state repository.
They may be named differently but each of the states has a statistics, data or records department or main office from which public records can be requested. With computerization and the internet, other down-line agencies within the states are expectantly also tasked and equipped with this function. Actually, death records online is by far the most convenient and popular way of retrieving them.
In cases where time is of the essence, retrieving Free public death records from public offices is not a good option as they typically require queuing and waiting time. In any case, people are generally better off with commercial information providers as their superb service more than justify their fees, provided they looked in the right places and found the right one.