March 31, 2023, 7:56 pm
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General Information About Massachusetts Death Records and Laws
Obtaining Massachusetts death records does not have to be difficult to do. These death records can provide a vital source of information for those that need them, including information about family members, addresses and even the cause of death. The amount of information available to the public depends on many factors, including the age of the record, the data related to the death and the person who is requesting this information. For the most recent records on file in Massachusetts, it may be necessary to provide a reason or relation to the deceased person in order to obtain these records.
The state has a process it follows in terms of organizing and managing death records. Every five years, the state moves the records considered the oldest from one agency to another. The records for the previous 100 years are kept on file at the public health offices. Older records, though, are kept in the archive. For those who are searching for these vital records, including Massachusetts death records, the location of the records really depends on the age of them. The state will transfer records every five years for the oldest five years worth of records held. The next scheduled move will occur in 2016.
For those who are looking for Massachusetts death records from 1841 through 1910, the best location for finding this information is at the state archives. The following is the address these records are kept. You can write to the address to get more information and to make a request for the information.
Massachusetts State Archives
220 Morrissey Boulevard
Boston, Massachusetts 02125
You can also call the agency directly to get more information on the process or the availability of records. To do so, call 617-727-4319. For those who are looking for more recent death records, the best place to obtain this information is through the state's department of health. You can do that by visiting or mailing the following address.
Registry of Vital Records and Statistics
Massachusetts Department of Public Health
470 Atlantic Avenue, 2nd Floor
Boston, Massachusetts 02210
You can also contact this organization by phone. To do that, call 617-753-8600. For those who are looking for records from any time prior to 1841, you will need to look locally for this information. Massachusetts death records from that period may be difficult to locate because they were not mandated to be kept or sent to the state agencies. This limitation can be overcome, though.
Massachusetts death records can provide you with the information you need if you can get them. Keep in mind that even for older records, it is possible to get this information but doing so is usually done at the local level. Visit a local township office or you may be able to get information from the local religious organizations in the area. In fact, some of these religious organizations have very old records for the region, including those dating back hundreds of years. This can aid in any type of records search you may need.
Massachusetts Death Records

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