Vital Records

Obtaining Copies of Vital Records

Vital records are not public. Therefore, only those individuals who have what is called a "direct and tangible interest" in the record may have access to record. The following individuals and/or groups make-up those having direct and tangible interest:

  • The person named on the certificate, a member of his/her immediate family, his guardian, or an authorized agent of these individuals
  • Attorneys-at-law, title examiners, or members of legally incorporated genealogical societies in the conduct of their official duties
  • Persons requiring information for the determination or protection of a personal or property right
  • A person who has been granted a court order instructing the registrar to provide disclosure

A direct and tangible interest shall not be demonstrated by firms, agencies, or individuals requesting information to be used for commercial purposes.

The fee is $20.00 for the first copy; and $15 for each additional copy of the same record obtained at the same time.

Certified copies of vital records may be obtained in person at the Town Hall. You will be required to complete an application and present a government issued photo ID.

Certified copies may be requested by mail, using the appropriate application below and accompanied by a copy of your government issued photo ID, a self-addressed stamped envelope, and a check payable to the Town of Richmond.

Certified copies of birth records
A certified copy of a birth occurring from 1960 and forward can be obtained from any city or town hall in the State of Rhode Island. For births occurring prior to 1960, the Town Clerk’s Office maintains only the records of births which occurred in Richmond or for the birth of a child to a mother that resided in Richmond at the time of the birth.

See below for application for certified copy of birth record.

Certified copies of death records
The Town Clerk’s Office maintains copies of death certificates of individuals who died within Richmond or who were residents of Richmond at the time of their death.

See below for application for certified copy of death record.

See below for application for funeral directors only.

Certified copies of marriage records

The Town Clerk’s Office maintains copies of marriages that occurred in Richmond or marriages of residents of Richmond that occurred in another city or town within Rhode Island. Certified copies will only be issued to the parties on the marriage certificate or persons with a legal right to the record.

See below for application for certified copy of marriage record.

Applying for a Marriage License

A marriage license can be obtained from the city/ town of residence of either party to the marriage. Proof of residency is required. If both parties reside outside the State of Rhode Island, the license must be obtained in the city/town where the marriage will occur. 

Both parties must complete the Marriage License Worksheet. Please print clearly.  Both parties must present a government issued photo ID and a birth certificate. A passport will only be accepted in lieu of a birth certificate for births occurring outside the United States. If either party was previously married, a certified copy of a final divorce decree or death certificate must be presented.

The fee for a marriage license is $24.00. We ask that you arrive no later than 3:30pm to ensure ample time to complete and issue the license. Once the license is issued, it is valid for ninety days. If the marriage does not occur within ninety days, the license must be returned to the city/town of issuance.

Once the ceremony has taken place, the executed license must be returned to the city/town of issue within 72 business hours. Once it has been recorded by the city/town registrar, you may obtain a certified copy of your marriage certificate by following the instructions listed above. 

For additional rules and regulations, please refer to the General Marriage Requirements in the State of Rhode Island or contact your local city/town clerk’s office.