Divorces Records

Why would one generate a search term like divorces records?

Divorces Records

I can see that divorce records might be important in genealogical research, and I can believe that people lose their divorce records and need to replace them, said the guy trying to remember where his divorce papers are, and I can see that one might want to research a new partner to make sure they are really divorced, like they say,  We are so suspicious these days.

I did not know that divorce records are primary source records for marital history, including marriage date and place, property, residences, and dates of other important events like birthdays.

I did not know that divorce records contained records on property, living children, and the ages of the divorcees at the time of divorce.

I do know that obtaining divorce records varies by jurisdiction, and that obtaining divorces records will then vary by jurisdiction.

If you are a geneologist,  perhaps through Ancestry, then you can find information on the site about how to search for divorce records.

 Ways to Find Divorces Records

Divorce records are public, which means anyone can access them, when following the process of your local jurisdiction, whether online or at your county seat, or at your state's equivalent of the Department of Health and Vital Records. There may be fees involved, especially if you are using a private service.

To start, you will need to know the name of the person you are searching, and the name of their former partner. and the state or country the divorce was filed in.  Birthdays are a good tool to distinguish between all the divorced folks out there with the same name.

You could also contact or visit the Department of Health and Vital Records in your state.

In many states, certified records of divorce are only available from the state Superior Court in the county where the divorce was filed.  Or you can research at the county level Superior Court in the family law division or the civil records department. 

You may also try the County Clerk's office.

If you want a certified copy of the divorce, you may need to be one of the folks eligible, perhaps named on the record, or specified by law.  If you are not one of those entities, then you can only get an "informational" copy.

Divorces Records in Winnebago County Illinois

In my county, Winnebago County Illinois, I search Google for the keyword 'divorces records' and found this on the County website;

"Request copies in person in the Circuit Clerk’s Office, Records Division room 101; via the mail (Attn: Records Division room 101); or, by using the "Document Request" button on our Home page.

You can obtain photocopies, exemplified copies, and certified copies of any unsealed court record/document.

Please see the fee schedule for pricing information regarding copies and certification."

So I attempted to access my divorce decree online, and found the process very confusing.  I have no idea what some of the legal terms mean, and so the fields were filled incorrectly, which got me nowhere.  Seems to be made for lawyers.   Not sure if your county is set up like my county, but if I actually wanted a copy of my divorce, I would call them first, and then go visit.

The above quote says that records are available online, but I could not quickly find them, and that experience makes me want to call ahead, before I drive 20 miles and try to find a downtown parking location, only to find out that those divorce records are not available or I am directed to find them online. 

At any rate I wish you luck finding your divorces records.

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