Changing Marriage and Divorce Certificates

We currently have a four (4) month processing turnaround time for certificate corrections mailed in.
  • If you submitted an application with a processing fee, the date your check or money order is cashed is the date we received your request, which helps you estimate the time left for processing.
  • We are working diligently to reduce the turnaround times. If your request has not been processed after four (4) months, please call us at (360) 236-4300. We appreciate your patience, thank you.

Effective January 1, 2023, the Center for Health Statistics Office adopted policy CHS-M6-2023 that describes the requirements for a complete application to change or correct a marriage or divorce certificate using the Affidavit for Correction form. The policy follows the state law in chapter 70.58A RCW.

We can only make changes to marriage and divorce certificates that took place in Washington State from 1968 to present. Please follow the directions on this webpage to avoid delays or application denial.


For each application, you must submit the following:

  • A completed and signed Affidavit for Correction form
  • Copy of your government issued photo identification card
  • Proof of relationship, if required
  • Any required supporting proof documents

Marriage and Divorce Certificate Corrections

Certificate fields you cannot amend with an Affidavit for Correction

  • Social Security Numbers
  • Original signatures

Marriage or divorce certificates registered through a court order may require to be amended or corrected with a court order.

Who can Request an Amendment

  • “Person A” or “Person B” named on the marriage or divorce record may request an amendment to:
    • Change their own personal facts with the Affidavit for Correction form and one (1) proof document
    • Change the other person’s personal facts with the Affidavit for Correction form signed by both parties and one (1) proof document
    • Change the Date of Decree section with a certified divorce decree
  • The Officiant named on the marriage record may change only the date and place of marriage. The officiant must use the Affidavit for Correction form to make this change. No proof documentation is required.
  • The County Clerk named on the divorce record may only change the date of divorce. The County Clerk must use the Facility Affidavit for Correction form to make this change. Our Facility and Practitioner Correction Information page explains how to request an amendment with a Facility Affidavit for Correction. No proof documentation is required.
  • For divorces, either “Person A” or “Person B” named on the record may change the Date of Decree section with a certified divorce decree.

Acceptable Proof Documents

Acceptable proof documents include:

  • Hospital/medical record
  • Full Numident Report (Social Security)
  • Social Security Abstract
  • Birth, marriage, or divorce record
  • Copy of passport or enhanced identity document
  • Certificate of Naturalization
  • Permanent resident card (I-551)
  • Health or life insurance policy
  • Military record (DD-214)
  • Official school transcripts
  • Government agency records for establishment of benefits (such as social services or Medicaid

We do not accept a Driver’s License, Social Security Card, family bible, or hospital decorative birth certificate as proof documents.

Proof documents must:

  • Show the true facts that are being requested to be changed
  • Include full name and date of birth
  • Match exactly the correction requested on the Affidavit for Correction. Example, if you are requesting a correction from “Mary Doe” to “Mary Ann Doe”, the proof must show the name to be Mary Ann Doe. Proof cannot show “Mary A. Doe” or “M. Ann Doe”.
  • Be from independent sources, when more than one proof document is required
  • Have been established over five years ago (it could have been printed more recently) OR have been established within five years of birth, if correcting the child's information and child is under five.

Only documents listed below are exempt from the five-year rule and will be accepted from any period of time:

  • Passport
  • Permanent resident card (I-551)


You must use the Affidavit for Correction form.

The form is also printed on the back of every certificate. Print the most recent form if the revision date is before March 2020.

Ordering a new certificate or exchanging a certificate with your application

You can exchange or order a certificate when you change a vital record.

  • If you have a certified copy of a certificate issued less than one year ago, send in the certified copy of the certificate with your correction application. We will exchange the certificate at no charge. Include a copy of a phot identification and proof of relationship, if required.
  • To order a certified copy of a certificate, fill out the birth certificate order form and send it in with your correction application. Follow the instructions on the order form to avoid delays.
  • Certificate will be issued after the correction has been processed.

Submitting the Affidavit for Correction Application

You can submit your completed application to the Department of Health by mail or in-person.

1) By Mail

Center for Health Statistics
Attn: Amendments
P.O. Box 47814
Olympia, WA 98504-7814

2) In Person by appointment

Schedule An Appointment | Washington State Department of Health


Contact us at 360-236-4300 or