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Multi-Year Searches

A multi-year search request is a request from an applicant to search more than one year to locate an event. Occasionally, the Division of Vital Records receives requests to search files for a birth or death certificate without specific information such as the subject's first and last name, the exact spelling of the names or the place of the event. Because of the way the records are filed, especially in the earlier years, it is literally impossible to search for a certificate without that basic information. An applicant should access other resources to attempt to obtain this basic information before requesting a multi-year search request. This service is only to be used when all other information is available (name and place), except for the exact year of birth or death.

Birth Certificate Multi-Year Searches

  • Fee is $45 for a search of two to 10 years and includes the fee for one certified copy, if located.
  • Additional years may be searched at a rate of $25 for a search of two to 10 additional years.
  • Click Forms to print a copy of the application for multi-year search of birth record. If you cannot provide sufficient information, your request will not be processed.
    • Pay close attention when designating a 10-year span. For example, 1955 through 1965 is an eleven-year span. If you want your search to be limited to 10 years, you must choose 1955 through 1964 or 1954 through 1963.
    • A minimum of the subject's first and last name is required to conduct a multi-year search; however, if you know the subject's middle name or suffix, please include that information.
    • List only one spelling of the first and last name. If there are variations to the spelling of these names, indicate such names in the entry for "Additional Information" located at the bottom of the application form. This information will only be used to determine if the appropriate birth record has been located, not to conduct a search based on the different name. A request for another name would require an additional application with the appropriate fee.
    • If the subject has a common name, it may not be possible to determine if the appropriate birth record has been located.
    • Provide at least the county of birth.
  • Certain birth certificates are considered public records after a fixed amount of time has passed. You may access Pennsylvania birth indices for public birth records for events occurring in 1906 through 1912. Click on Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC) for more information.
  • Click Current Processing Times for the most up-to-date processing information.

Death Certificate Multi-Year Searches

  • Fee is $45 for a search of two to 10 years and includes the fee for one certified copy, if located.
  • Additional years may be searched at a rate of $25 for a search of two to 10 additional years.
  • Print a copy of the application for multi-year search of death record. If you cannot provide sufficient information, your request will not be processed.
    • Pay close attention when designating a 10-year span. For example, 1963 through 1973 is an eleven-year span. If you want your search to be limited to 10 years, you must choose 1963 through 1972 or 1962 through 1971.
    • A minimum of the subject's first and last name is required to conduct a multi-year search; however, if you know the subject's middle name or suffix, include that information.
    • Be sure to include the married name for a female decedent when applicable.
    • List only one spelling of the first and last name. If there are variations to the spelling of these names, indicate such names in the entry for "Additional Information" located at the bottom of the application form. This information will only be used to determine if the appropriate death record has been located, not to conduct a search based on the different name. A request for another name (even a maiden name) would require an additional application with the appropriate fee.
    • If the subject has a common name, it may not be possible to determine if the appropriate birth record has been located.
    • Provide at least the county of death.
  • Certain death certificates are considered public records after a fixed amount of time has passed. You may access Pennsylvania death indices for public death records for events occurring in 1906 through 1967. Click on Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC) for more information.
  • Click Current Processin Times for the most up-to-date processing information.