death certificateEventually, you will need a death certificate to prove to the court that your loved one died. However, it often takes several weeks or longer to get a death certificate, and there are things that a Louisiana succession lawyer can do to move a succession case along before you have a death certificate in hand.

How to Get a Death Certificate

The Office of the State Registrar is responsible for creating and issuing vital records in Louisiana. Death records are not public in Louisiana, but you may order a death certificate if you are a:

  • Relative of the decedent. Relatives include a surviving spouse, mother, father, adult child, brother, sister, grandmother, grandfather, grandchild, or person named in a court proceeding as an immediate or surviving family member.
  • Beneficiary. If you are named as a beneficiary of an insurance policy or trust in the deceased person’s name, you can order a death certificate.
  • Succession representative. If you are a succession representative, then you must provide a certified Letter of Testamentary or Letter of Administration.
  • Lawyer. Attorneys must provide credentials and a written declaration indicating that the lawyer is preparing a small succession for the deceased person or is representing one of the parties described above.

A completed application, filing fee, and proper identification must be provided before a death certificate will be issued to you.

Generally, you may request the death certificate:

  • In person. You can get a death certificate at Vital Records Central Office, located at 1450 Poydras Street, Suite 400, New Orleans, at participating Louisiana Clerks of Court, or a Vital Records kiosk location.
  • By mail. Your mailed request should go to Vital Records Registry, PO Box 60630, New Orleans, LA 70160.

Certain relatives may also request the death certificate by phone, fax, or internet.

Contact a Succession Lawyer Today

If you are the administrator of an estate or have questions about starting a succession, we encourage you to contact our Louisiana succession lawyers today. Each year, we help hundreds of families throughout the state with their succession needs. Allow us to take the stress and confusion out of the succession process for you.