Alaska Vital Records
Alaska Vital Records
In Alaska, the Office of Vital Records is charged with maintaining all state level vital records, including documents relating to people’s key life events. These important events can include births, deaths, marriages, and divorces. The files and records relating to these important events can include divorce decrees, divorce certificates and other divorce records, birth certificates, death certificates, marriage licenses, marriage certificates. Files are all kept together in a central vital record registry to be used later for statistical analysis.
Divorce records are distributed by government officials in the state of Alaska, after the divorce in question is registered. Divorce records in Alaska are split into two sections, 1890-1913 and 1913-present. When someone files for a divorce or an annulment in the state of Alaska, records of the event are stored with other state vital files in a central registry. These records can include divorce certificates and divorce decrees, as well as other divorce-related files. It depends on the state in question as to whether the documents can be accessed and copied by the public. In 2017, there were 2,680 divorces in the state of Alaska.
Marriage records are also distributed by government officials in the state of Alaska, after the wedding in question is registered. Marriage records in Alaska are split into two sections, 1890-1913 and 1913-present. The Alaska State Bureau of Vital Statistics mainly holds records past 1930, but has a few from before 1890. Church records can be used to find some earlier marriages. The Western State Marriage Index has some records from 1896-1911. A territorial registration of marriages was introduced in 1913, and was complied with by 1930. Marriage records are restricted for 50 years after the event registration, and only those on the certificate, legal representatives, or those legally entitled can access copies. In 2017, there were 5,123 marriages in the state of Alaska.
Birth records refer to the certificates issued upon the birth of every single child in the state of Alaska, or a certified copy of that document. Birth records are split into two categories in Alaska, before 1913 and after 1913. No births were recorded by government agencies before 1913 as there were no laws that insisted on it until then. All records before 1913 were collected by local church registers. The Alaska State Bureau of Vital Statistics has some of these early church records on microfilm to create delayed birth records. However, the majority of the records at the Bureau come from after 1930. The state-wide registration of births came into play in 1913, after Alaska became a territory in 1912. Registration was mainly complied with by 1945. In Alaska, only those listed on the record can obtain copies of birth certificates. In 2017, there were 10,447 births in the state of Alaska.
Death records relate to the copy of information from a person’s death certificate upon their passing. Death records are split into two categories in the state, 1804-1913 and 1913-present day. Territorial registration of death records was introduced in 1913, and was mainly complied with by 1945. The Alaska State Bureau of Vital Statistics has a few records dating back to 1890, but the majority come from after 1930. These records can only be accessed by family members and legal representatives until 50 years has passed. In 2013, there were 3,997 deaths in the state of Alaska.
Why are these records available to the public?
The Alaska Public Records Act was passed in 1982, with the most recent amendments coming in 2003. The act ensured that residents of the state could access all public records. Record held by local or state government can all be accessed and copied by members of the public, as long as law permits it. This is seen as a fundamental right of the people.
To access records:
Bureau of Vital Statistics
5441 Commercial Blvd.
PO Box 110675
Juneau, AK 99801