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The original content for this article was contributed by The National Institute for Genealogical Studies in June 2012. It is an excerpt from their course Canadian Vital Statistics Records Part 2  by by Sharon L. Murphy. The Institute offers over 200 comprehensive genealogy courses for a fee ($).


Records of vital events that occurred in Alberta are held by Alberta Vital Statistics, a division of Government Services. Their records date back as early as 1853 for births, and 1890 for marriages and deaths.

Anyone may obtain the following with no restrictions: a birth record 120 years old or older; a marriage record that is 75 years old or older; and a death record after 50 years have passed.

In that time frame, certified photographic prints can be supplied for the purposes of genealogical research. A certified photographic reprint is an exact reproduction of the original registration. A certificate, on the other hand, is an extract of selected (and not full) information.

To obtain these, residents of Alberta must complete the appropriate form and apply in person to a registry service agent. For information on Registry Agents available in your area, call (780) 422-7013 from Edmonton or call 310-0000 then enter 433-7330 from other areas (Alberta only). You can also check the Service Alberta website to download the appropriate form.

Non-Alberta residents who wish to make application for a genealogical search or certificate may apply by mail to Registry Connect. For an application form and further instructions, go to the Alberta’s Online Registry Service website. Send the application and applicable fees (Visa, MasterCard, or cheque/money order payable to Registry Connect) to:

Registry Connect
Suite 202, 1003 Ellwood Road SW
Ellwood Office Park South
Edmonton, Alberta T6X 0B3

Concerning more modern records than the time frame outlined above, there are eligibility requirements to apply for a record. These are shown on the chart on the next page.

Alberta residents must use the services of a Registry Agent to obtain any record or to make a search, whether the item is “old” or not. The government has set their fees for various services. This is a somewhat unique system, “a network of community-based service centres,” which offer services and searches in a number of government-related areas.

Since genealogists and family historians often do not know the precise date of an event they wish to find, search services are also provided in three-year blocks. This also is done through a Registry Agent. The agents are located in many places throughout the province. By accessing the above government website, you can reach the pages where you can enter a database search for a local agent, and read the current fees for their “Vital Statistics Products”.

As well, anybody can apply for a letter of record search conducted through the Vital Statistics database system that allows someone to find out if an event took place in Alberta. There are no eligibility requirements to request a search of an event. A search letter only confirms that an event is or is not recorded based on the information provided by the client. No actual information of the event is provided.

Searches are conducted by the year of the event and the name of the person whose record is being searched. Searches are conducted within a consecutive three year time frame and it is up to the applicant to provide the time period they would like searched.

Who Can Apply for a Record Search?



Information in this Wiki page is excerpted from the online courses Canadian Vital Statistics Records Part 2 offered by The National Institute for Genealogical Studies. To learn more about these courses or other courses available from the Institute, see our website. We can be contacted at

We welcome updates and additions to this Wiki page.

  • This page was last modified on 4 November 2014, at 16:55.
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