FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
1. Where do I find records relating to real property?
a. Deeds and mortgages are held by the County Clerk.
b. Tax and assessment records are held by both the town and village, as well as county, officials associated with these functions.
c. Building, planning and zoning records are held by town and village officials associated with these functions.
d. Some additional genealogical sources related to real property are available at the New York State Archives web page at http://www.archives.nysed.gov/aindex.shtml
2. How do I find out my court date, location and/or any changes to the court schedule?
Per New York State statute, the Onondaga County Clerk’s Office is Clerk to the Supreme and County Courts as custodian of their records only and does not schedule court cases. To find out a court date or any other information related to a case please contact the appropriate court that has been assigned.
For more additional information visit https://www.nycourts.gov/courts/5jd/onondaga/index.shtml
County - Court of Claims (315) 671-1030
County - Criminal (315) 671-1020
County- Family (315) 671-2000
Supreme (315) 671-1030
Surrogate (315) 671-2098
City of Syracuse:
Civil Division (315) 671-2782
Criminal Division (315) 671-2760
Traffic Division (315) 671-2770
Syracuse Community Treatment Court (315) 671-2795
Community Court (315) 671-2797
Adolescent Diversion Part (315)-671-4665
3. Where do I file for custody?
To file for custody contact Onondaga County Family Court at (315) 671-1200.
4. What court do I have to get an order of protection from?
Visit the New York State Uniformed Court System website for an explanation on what is an order of protection and the different criteria needed to obtain one from Family, Criminal or Supreme Court.
5. How do obtain a copy of a birth certificate or death certificate?
Onondaga County Health Department's Bureau of Vital Statistics is responsible for maintaining both death and birth certificates for the City of Syracuse and Onondaga County. Some of the municipalities keep some birth and death records but certified records are obtained through the County.
Requests for certified copies of birth and death records can be made by mail, fax, online or by visiting the Bureau of Vital Statistics. Their office is located at:
421 Montgomery Street
Room 20, Civic Center basement level
Syracuse, New York 13202
Phone (315) 435-3241
Proper ID is required. The fee for a birth or death certificate is $30.00. Additional copies of the same certificate are $15.00 each, when ordered at the same time. Regular mail requests will take about 7-10 business days. Express shipping is available for an additional fee.
Express Shipping (for birth and death certificates):
Express Mail (delivery in 2 to 3 days): add $20.00
Next Business Day Delivery: add $25.00
Office Hours (no appointment necessary):
Monday-Friday: 9:00 am - 4:00 pm
For additional information and to print an online request form for a birth or death certificate, please visit:
Additional information can also be found on the New York State web site:
New York State Department of Health
Vital Records Section
Corning Tower Building/ESP
Albany, NY 12237-0023 Phone: (518) 474-3077
6. Where can I get a marriage license?
A marriage license may be obtained from the City of Syracuse Clerk’s Office or at any Town Clerk’s Office. The County Clerk’s Office does not issue marriage licenses per New York State statute. The current cost of a marriage license is $40.00. A government photo issued identification card, a certified birth certificate and if previously married, proof of dissolution of marriage (Certified Judgment of Divorce or Certified Death Certificate) is required to obtain a license.
7. What do I need to know to obtain Birth, Death, and/or marriage records?
(As per as per http://www.health.state.ny.us/nysdoh/)
No information shall be released from a record of birth, which has been placed in a confidential file pursuant to Public Health Law Section 4138.
No information shall be released from a record of birth unless the record has been on file for at least 75 years and the person to whom the record relates is known to the applicant to be deceased.
No information shall be released from a record of death unless the record has been on file for at least 50 years.
No information shall be released from a record of marriage unless the record has been on file for at least 50 years and the parties to the marriage are known to the applicant to be deceased.
The time periods specified in (3b), (3c), and (3d) are waived if the applicant is a descendant or has been designated to act on behalf of a descendant of the person whose record is being requested. A descendant is a person in the direct line of descent. The applicant shall provide documentation of descendancy prior to the release of information in those instances where a waiver of the waiting period is requested. A party acting on behalf of a descendant shall further provide documentation that the descendant authorized the party to make such application.
All uncertified copies, abstracts, or information issued for genealogical research purposes shall be clearly marked with the statement "For Genealogical Purposes Only."
8. How do I obtain a certified copy of my marriage license?
If you remember where you obtained it (City of Syracuse Clerk’s Office or a Town Clerk’s Office, you can get a certified copy at that location. If you are not sure of where you first obtained it you can contact the New York State Department of Vital Statistics where all original marriage licenses are filed in New York State.
For additional information visit: http://www.health.ny.gov/vital_records/marriage.htm
9. Where do I find old newspapers?
a. New York State Library Newspaper Project, http://www.nysl.nysed.gov/nysnp/
b. Local Libraries
c. The local newspaper offices
d. A website to locate newspaper publications in Onondaga County is: http://www.nysl.nysed.gov/nysnp/134.htm
10. Do you have tax records/vouchers?
Tax and assessment records are held by both the town and village, as well as county, officials associated with these functions.
Some additional genealogical sources related to real property are available at the New York State Archives web page at:
11. Where do I find wills and estates?
Surrogate Court at Courthouse
401 Montgomery Street
Syracuse, New York 13202