North Carolina Public Records

North Carolina’s public records laws are contained in North Caroline General Statutes § 132. These laws provide that the public records and information compiled by North Carolina government agencies are the property of the people. Public records include documentary materials made or received by North Carolina government agencies in the course of doing business. These materials include documents, papers, letters, maps, photographs, books, films, sound recordings, magnetic or other tapes, electronic data-processing, and any other types of documentary material. Any person can inspect or get copies of public records, and there is no specific procedure for making a request under the Public Records Law. Generally, the custodian of public records is in charge of handling those requests. Agencies cannot charge fees for inspecting public records, but can for certifying copies of public records and can charge the actual cost of the record for uncertified copies. Some information is exempt from disclosure, including confidential information.

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Public & Vital Records for Counties in North Carolina

More About North Carolina

North Carolina is the ninth-most populous state. A state known for industrial research, higher education, agriculture, and banking, North Carolina has a thriving economic environment and attracts residents from around the world. In 2016, the North Carolina population was estimated to be 10,146,788. The capital is Raleigh, which is in the state’s well-known research triangle, but the largest city is Raleigh. Because of its thriving industry and research environments, North Carolina attracts a large population of people from throughout the United States and the rest of the world. If running a background check on a person in North Carolina, consider that he or she may be from another location.


North Carolina Vital Records

The North Carolina Division of Public Health is responsible for collecting and maintaining vital statistics in the state of North Carolina. Vital Records is part of the Division of Public Health, and its main branch is located in Raleigh. Vital Records works with the county registers of deeds offices, health departments, and birthing facilities around the state to record vital statistics including: births, deaths, fetal deaths, marriages, and divorces occurring throughout the state.

Birth Records

In North Carolina, you can order a birth certificate online or at the Register of Deeds office in the county where the event took place. In Mecklenburg County, birth certificates are available at the local health department. North Carolina Vital Records is the only place to get a birth certificate for an adopted child.

Death Records

In North Carolina, you can order a death certificate online or at the Register of Deeds office in the county where the event took place. In Mecklenburg County, death certificates are available at the local health department.

Marriage Records

In North Carolina, you may request marriage records online or at the Register of Deeds office in the county where the event took place.

Divorce Records

In North Carolina, you can find divorce certificates at the Clerk of Court for the county where the divorce was filed.

Learn About Criminal Records in Other States


Learn about North Carolina criminal records, NC Property Records, or read about public records in another state from the list below: