How Long After the Death of a Person in Florida Do You Have to Wait to Get a Death Certificate?

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The death of a loved one can be difficult to handle. In addition to all of the emotional stress of losing someone close to you, there is also the issue of taking care of the deceased's unfinished business and funeral arrangements. With proper guidance, attaining a death certificate in Florida is a relatively easy process.

1 At the hospital

In the hospital, once a time of death has been established, administrators will issue discharge paperwork. This releases the body into the custody of the family.

2 At the funeral home

Once at the mortuary, you have the opportunity to request that the funeral director order a death certificate from the state, using his official director number.

3 Determine your eligibility

In Florida, anyone can order a death certificate in a case were there is no cause of death. Once a cause has been identified, only a parent, spouse, child, grandchild, or adult sibling of the deceased can request a death certificate. Also, anyone with vested interest in the decedent's estate, as proved by presentation of a will or other documentation, can order a death certificate.

After 50 years, anyone may access a death certificate.

4 How to Order

In order to obtain a death certificate in Florida, you must provide the full name, Social Security number, and sex of the deceased, along with the date and location of the death. You must also provide your name, mailing address, business phone number, relationship to the decedent, picture ID, a copy of the coroner's report, and notarized guardianship papers, if applicable.

5 Ordering, Processing, and Delivery

A death certificate in Florida takes about a week to be processed. One can be ordered from the health department's office of vital statistics at:

Bureau of Vital Statistics Attn: Client Services P.O. Box 210 Jacksonville, FL 32231-0042

You may request a death certificate in person 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, at:

Bureau of Vital Statistics 1217 Pearl St. Jacksonville, FL 32202

You may order one by phone 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, at (904) 359-6900, extension 9000. You can place a credit card order 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at (877) 550-7330, or by fax at (877) 550-7428.

Megan Martin began writing professionally in 2007. Her expertise includes nonfiction, poetry and SEO. She has been published in "Pan Ku," "Broward New Times" and online. Martin has a Bachelor of Science in social psychology from Broward College, and is pursuing another degree in psychology and three minors at Florida State University.