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Florida Marriage Records Direct Access

As with other states, marriage records in Florida are considered as public records. Along with birth, death, and divorce, they form the vital records under the Department of Health of Florida. Being public records, Florida marriage records are accessible by anyone as long as procedures are followed. From checking out a prospective spouse or partner to family tree and genealogy studies, they are one of the most widely searched public records not only in Florida but also nationwide.

In line with the standard structure across the country, Florida marriage records come under the jurisdiction of the state of Florida. Those dated June 6, 1927 and after are uploaded and maintained at the state repository in the Office of Vital Statistics located at Jacksonville which reports into the Florida Department of Health. Florida marriage records prior to that date are only obtainable from the Clerk of Court of that particular county where the marriage license was issued, with some known to be from as early as 1822.

There are an estimated 5 million marriage records on file at the Office of Vital Statistics of Florida. They can be requested through phone, fax, by mail or in person. Fees are required and they can be enquired at the respective agencies or viewed at their websites online. Every search is charged even if the requested record is not found in which case an official ‘not found’ statement will be provided. It must be noted that it does not strictly mean that no such marriage records exist when that happens. They may possibly be present but are classified as confidential marriage records or other categories that render them non-public. However, this is more of an exception rather than the rule.

Individual state records are not linked and that applies to Florida marriage records. Florida marriage records of former Florida residents will not show up in a marriage record search in another state and vice-versa. For people who have resided in multiple states, marriage record searches would have to be conducted for each of those states in order to cover their marital history fully but breezing through it online is a far, far cry from what people used to have to go through during the pre-internet era.

With the advent of the internet, online search has by far become the predominant mode of researching marriage records over the traditional on-site option. The foremost reasons for its popularity are:
1.    Privacy and discretion – you can research people in secret.
2.    Convenience – it can be conducted anywhere since only a PC with internet access is required.
3.    Vast options – wide range of information sources readily found online.
4.    Immediacy – instant and 24/7.

There are basically two versions of online marriage record searches: free-of-charge and fee-based. The former is usually offered in the form of teaser information or as enticement toward an underlying patronage or subscription. Their overall standards will fulfill nothing more than broad research. The latter is the one that’s necessary for official and other serious purposes and even so, finding the right commercial record provider can be tricky. Fortunately, online shopping is no-sweat so source around a little before signing up.


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