You need to register on the General Register Office (GRO) website to get a copy of a birth, adoption, death, marriage or civil partnership certificate in England and Wales.
You can use this service to research your family tree.
Order with the GRO index reference number.
It takes around 10 minutes and you’ll need a debit or credit card.
Certificates cost £11 and are sent 4 days after you apply.
If you do not have a GRO index reference number, you’ll have to pay £3 extra for each search. Certificates are sent 15 working days after you apply.
If you need the certificate sooner, you can use the priority service for £35. It’ll be sent the next working day if you order by 4pm.
Extra copies are the same price.
Registration of births or deaths abroad
If you’ve registered a birth or death with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) Overseas Registration Unit, you cannot get a copy from the GRO until the November of the following year.
If you need a copy sooner, email the name of the registered person, the registration date and reference number to:
- email@example.com for birth registrations
- firstname.lastname@example.org for death registrations
You’ll get a reply telling you how to get your copy and the cost - usually £50 plus courier fees.
Order a copy of a certificate for use in the EU
A Multilingual Standard Form (MSF) translates parts of a certificate so that it can be used in an EU country. It costs £22 and is sent after 15 working days.
Ordering by phone
To order certificates by phone, call the General Register Office.
General Register Office
Telephone: 0300 123 1837
Text relay: 18001 0300 123 1837
Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm
Saturday, 9am to 4pm
Find out about call charges
Ordering by post
To order certificates by post, fill in the relevant GRO certificate application and send it to the address on the form.
You can also order certificates from the local register office where the birth, death or marriage was registered.