Death certificates for Burr Oak burials reduced to $2

July 21, 2009
Press Release
Vital Records

Today, July 21, the Cook County Board approved an ordinance to reduce the fee of death certificates for people whose loved ones are buried at Burr Oak Cemetery in Alsip.

What will a Burr Oak death certificate cost?
The cost of obtaining a death record will drop from $15 to $2; the nominal fee covers the remittance to the State in accordance with state law.

When does the fee change start? When does it end?
The waiver will start on Wednesday, July 22. The waiver period will end Sept. 15 unless the Board decides otherwise.

Where do I get a Burr Oak death certificate?
The Clerk’s Bureau of Vital Records has six locations. A special customer service counter specifically for Burr Oak inquiries will be open downtown Chicago in a Pedway (lower level) room of 69 W. Washington. The Clerks’ office also has five suburban locations in Rolling Meadows, Skokie, Maywood, Bridgeview and Markham. Check our website – – for hours of operation.

Can I make a request over the phone?
No. These requests must be made in person.

How will I receive the certificate?
All certificate requests will be processed and mailed to your home.

What if I don’t know if my relative is buried at Burr Oak?
The Clerk’s office will continue to offer free searches for anyone interested in learning if their relative was buried at Burr Oak. If the person is buried at Burr Oak, the cost of a certificate is $2. If the person is not buried at Burr Oak, the cost is $15. You are not obligated to purchase a certificate if you request a search.

Does this apply to other cemeteries?
No. This is a limited waiver that applies only to Burr Oak.

What about people who purchased a certificate prior to the waiver?
Hundreds of people purchased Burr Oak death certificates since news of the problems were released. They will all receive a $13 refund, pursuant to an ordinance amendment passed today. There is no need for anyone to apply for the refund; it will be automatically issued to those who purchased Burr Oak certificates. Checks will be mailed in 6-8 weeks.