Nevada Court Records
How are Divorce Records Generated in Nevada?
Divorce records are records generated in the process of the dissolution of a marriage or union. Divorce records include case files such as complaints, summons, notice or orders of appearance, and divorce decrees, and certificates. Divorce decrees and certificates are issued at the end of the divorce process and are useful as legal proof of the dissolution of a marriage. In Nevada, the divorce rate is 9.6 out of every 1,000 women from the age of 15 upwards.
Divorce can be granted in three ways:
- Divorce by default: this can happen when a defendant does not file any paperwork within 21 days of being served with the complaint and summons for a divorce. In this case, the plaintiff may request that the court grant a final divorce. The decree of divorce issued at the end of this process will contain all the requests made in the complaint submitted.
- Divorce by agreement: after a divorce case has been filed, if a couple agrees on all the terms of their divorce, a final decree of divorce can be prepared with the full details of their agreement. This decree must be signed by both parties in the divorce and submitted to the judge for approval. Couples who divorce by agreement may not need to have a court hearing to have their divorce finalized.
- Divorce at trial: a divorce can also be finalized at a trial or hearing. In this case, the judge specifies orders that will be part of the final decree. As in all cases, divorce at trial is not finalized until a decree of divorce is signed by the judge.
In Nevada, a plaintiff does not need to prove that their spouse committed a fault; this is otherwise known as a no-fault divorce. However, there are three grounds for divorce:
- Insanity for at least two years before the divorce complaint is filed
- Separation without cohabitation for at least one year before filing for divorce
To be eligible to file for divorce in Nevada, applicants must satisfy residency requirements in addition to the legal grounds. Either party in the divorce must have lived in Nevada for at least six weeks before filing for divorce, and they must intend to live there indefinitely. A witness, such as a co-worker, friend, or family member, must sign an affidavit under oath that and penalty of perjury that the plaintiff is a Nevada resident.
Divorce is final only after the judge signs a decree of divorce and it is filed with the clerk of court.
Are Divorce Records Public in Nevada?
Under the Nevada Public Records Statutes, divorce records can be viewed by any member of the public, however, confidential records such as financial information, social security details, and information about children younger than 18 years may be excluded. Information about victims of domestic violence and abuse is also not available to the public.
Divorce records are maintained at the county level by the County Clerk’s Office, and some counties offer case record search online. However, these may not be actual case files or certified copies. Certified copies of divorce records may only be obtained by authorized persons or persons with proven tangible interests.
What are the types of Divorce Records available in Nevada?
In Nevada, there are three major types of divorce records: case files, which include any documents generated at any point in the process of the divorce, such as summons, complaints, and notices; Certificate of Verification of Divorce, and Divorce Decrees.
Case files are maintained at the county court in which the divorce was finalized. Some case files may form part of the final divorce decree. Verification of divorce is provided by the Nevada Vital Records Office of the Department of Health and Human Services. Requests can be made by mailing a completed request form to the office of vital records along with the verification fee.
A Divorce Decree can be prepared by either or both parties in the divorce. However, it must be signed by both parties and approved by a judge before divorce is considered final. Divorce decrees are maintained at the county level by the clerk of the court in which the divorce was finalized.
Typically, divorce verification records contain the summary of a divorce, such as the names of the parties in the divorce, the date when the divorce was finalized, and the venue or county where the divorce was finalized. Divorce Decrees are usually more detailed and are multiple pages long. Divorce decrees contain decisions on details such as child support, change of name, spousal support, debt and liabilities, and property and asset distribution.
Certified copies of divorce records are acceptable as legal proof of dissolution of marriage and are required for legal processes such as name change or re-marriage.
How Do I Get Divorce Records in Nevada?
In Nevada, divorce records may be obtained in person, online, and by mail. Requestors may obtain divorce records through online case searches provided at the county level, or through third-party websites. County-level case searches are typically free to access, however, records available online may only be indexes or summaries of divorce records. Actual divorce decrees and certificates are not available online.
For example, Clark County provides an online case search that allows members of the public to find divorce records by search criteria such as the case or docket number, the date the case was filed, and its status.
The Office of Vital Records can verify divorces that took place after 1986 until September 2005. Requests for verification of divorce can be made by submitting a completed request form along with required the required verification fee of $10 to:
Office of Vital Records
4150 Technology Way Ste 104
Carson City, NV 89706
Questions about divorce events may also be addressed through the Vital Records office phone number at 775–684–4242 or by emailing Vitalrecords@health.nv.gov.
Certified copies of Divorce Decrees are maintained at the county level. These records can be obtained from the County Clerk in the county where the divorce was finalized. Requests may be sent in by mail to the County records office in the county where the divorce was granted.
Together with a completed request form, requestors of certified copies must submit stamped, self-addressed envelopes, copies of valid, government-issued identification, and the certification fee.
Who Can Obtain Divorce Records in Nevada?
While some divorce records may be viewed freely online, only authorized persons can obtain certified copies of divorce records in Nevada. Records available online may include summaries of a divorce event and contain such details as names of the divorced parties, the date when the divorce was finalized, and the venue or county where the divorce was finalized.
Persons requesting copies of divorce records must show that there is tangible interest, which is a valid reason to request the records. Such persons must also present valid, government-issued photo IDs as proof of identity and relationship to the parties named on the divorce record. Attorneys may need to make requests using the company’s letterhead.
Are Nevada Divorce Records available online?
Some Nevada counties, such as Clark County, provide case record search online. There are also third-party websites that offer case searches for a fee. However, the divorce records available online are for information only, and not acceptable as legal proof of divorce by any state agency. Only certified copies of divorce records are legal proof of the dissolution of a marriage.
The Office of Vital Records provides case search and divorce verification for marriages dissolved after 1968 and until September 2005. The request made to the Office of Vital Records must include the full names of the parties named on the divorce record, the date of finalization of the divorce, and the county where the divorce was finalized. A verification fee of $10 will be charged.
Requests for verification must be mailed to the Office of Vital Records. Requests for certified copies of Divorce Decrees may be mailed to the judicial court clerk in the county where the divorce was finalized.
How Do I seal My Divorce Records in Nevada?
All or parts of divorce records can be sealed if persons named on the record petition the court or file a motion to have their records sealed. Divorce records are public records in Nevada, however, there are several reasons why divorce records may be sealed. If the records contain information about a child younger than 18 years old, such a record may be sealed. Records of domestic violence and abuse are also sealed to protect the victim.
If the court determines that there is a good reason to seal a divorce record, it will be ordered sealed.