Iowa Death Records



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How to Find Iowa Death Records

Death Records in Iowa

The Bureau of Health Statistics in Iowa maintains death records from July 1, 1880 to the present.

You must request your certified copies of death records in writing. In addition, you need to completely identify the record you are requesting and establish your eligibility to receive it.

Entitled persons include:
• Legal parents of the deceased
• Grandparents of the deceased
• Spouse of the deceased
• Children of the deceased
• Grandchildren of the deceased
• Siblings of the deceased
• Legal representative or guardians of the deceased

Legal guardians, representatives, or siblings of the deceased must provide additional proof of entitlement to the death record.

You can request a copy of a death record in person, by phone or by mail. You must establish your identity in the form of a photo ID (or a legible photocopy when requesting a copy of a death record by mail). If you are requesting in person, you must sign your application in the presence of a registrar. If you are requesting the death record by mail, you must have your signature notarized.

Requesting a Death Record in Person

You may request a death record in person at:
Iowa Department of Public Health
Bureau of Health Statistics
Lucas State Office Building, 1st Floor
Des Moines, Iowa 50319-0075

The hours of the Bureau of Health Statistics are from 7:00 AM to 4:45 PM Monday through Friday. They are closed on state recognized holidays.

You must complete a written application for a death record. The application can be found here:

Remember to it in the presence of a registrar and provide them with your valid, current government-issued photo ID card. You can pick up your copies of the death certificate in person two days later or you can request that they are mailed to an entitled person.

Requesting a Death Record by Mail

First, fill out the application which can be downloaded at:

Next, get your signature notarized, attach your check or money order made payable to the “Iowa Department of Public Health” with the proper fees, and attach a photocopy of your valid photo ID card. This copy must be legible. Mail all of the above items to:

Iowa Department of Public Health
Bureau of Health Statistics
Lucas State Office Building, 1st Floor
Des Moines, Iowa 50319-0075

Requesting a Death Record by Phone

Call (515) 281-4944 between 7:00 AM and 4:45 PM, Monday through Friday (except for Iowa’s state-observed holidays).

A recording will tell you how to apply by mail or in person. You will be given an option to order with a credit card (American Express, Discover, Mastercard, and Visa). When you choose this option, you will be connected with an operator who will take the information and process your credit card fro payment. This will incur an additional fee of $5.50. This fee is in addition to your death record search fee. Your phone order will take up to three weeks to process.

Expect a long wait to reach an operator. This option is not available for family history requests. Instead, apply in person or by mail for genealogy purposes.

Death Record Fees

Searching for a death record costs $15, a non-refundable fee. This search includes one certified copy of the death record, if it is located. Additional copies of the same record are $15.

Check or money orders should be made payable to the issuing registrar’s office. The checks must be drawn from the applicant’s checking account. All money orders must be in the applicant’s name. In addition, you must pay all fees upfront when applying for a death record.

Order right now and get Unlimited Access to sources for Iowa Death Records, Birth Records, Certificates, Cause of Death, Cemetery, circumstantial details and more!

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