Officials Warn Of High Online Fees For Official Certificates
Ordering online may not be the best choice when it comes to getting Wyoming birth, death, and other certificate services. That's the message from the Wyoming Department of Health, which points out their Vital Statistics Services Office is the only official source of such certificates and if residents aren't cautious of online providers, they may run into high fees and other frustrations.
“We frequently receive complaints from customers who use companies that claim to quickly get official certificates,” said Guy Beaudoin, deputy state registrar with the WDH Vital Statistics Services Office. “We do not want Wyoming residents to be fooled by the unrealistic service claims many of these online-based companies make and we don’t want them to pay unneeded high fees.”
Many companies pay to have their web sites listed first by online search engines, said Beaudoin. “People searching for Wyoming marriage, divorce, birth or death certificates may click on the first listing without making sure it’s the correct, official source.”
He points out their office is truly the only source for Wyoming’s official certificates. “What happens with many of these companies is they collect information from consumers, have individuals sign a release document and then simply forward a completed application to our office for processing. It’s an added step that adds time rather than getting people what they want any faster. We’ve also heard of these companies taking money and then doing nothing or sending outdated forms or information to their customers.”
Beaudoin said Vital Statistics Services charges no more than $20 for providing official documents, while secondary providers charge as much as three or four times the state fees.
“We suggest people contact our office directly rather than spending extra money,” Beaudoin said. “If someone needs quick service we will do our best to help. Certificate requests are processed within three days. Depending on the shipping method, documents may be received within a week. Prepaid shipping envelopes can help.”
He suggests residents visit the WDH web site at https://health.wyo.gov/admin/vitalstatistics/ or call (307) 777-7591 for help. You can also visit the Vital Statistics Services office in person in Cheyenne at 2300 Capitol Avenue on the first floor of the Hathaway Building.