Wyoming Court Records
How are Divorce Records Generated in Wyoming?
According to the United States Census Bureau, 9.4 is the divorce rate in the state of Wyoming. Divorce is defined as a dissolution of marriage, when two people who were previously married decide to legally reverse their decision.
In Wyoming, there are certain grounds, or acceptable reasons, to file for a divorce. Although considered a “no-fault” divorce state, it is still possible for a judge to grant a “fault” divorce. One way of filing for a no-fault divorce is to cite incompatibility or irreconcilable differences as a reason why the marriage can and should not continue. An example of this could be that one spouse wants to relocate, but the other does not. The judge will then often grant them a divorce.
There are other processes of getting a divorce in Wyoming. A mediated divorce usually happens when a couple does not agree on certain terms, so they hire a mediator who could be a counselor, retired judge, or attorney, as a neutral third-party. This method is used when both spouses feel comfortable and safe around each other and can communicate in a civilized manner. If there are children involved in the divorce, a judge or attorney may ask that a lawyer be appointed to the case specifically to focus on the needs of the children. There is also the option of legal separation in Wyoming. This is not a divorce, but instead a legal agreement to separate without legally ending the marriage. In a separation, decisions such as child custody, financial support, and insurance agreements are made.
- Infidelity, or cheating, by the other spouse
- Physical or emotional abuse
- Alcohol or drug addiction
- Lack of financial security or support
- Incurable insanity, defined by the other spouse being in a psychiatric hospital for at least two years
Are Divorce Records Public in Wyoming?
Generally, divorce records are considered confidential in Wyoming. Most details held within them are sealed by default and not available to the public, although other vital information within them such as testimonies, summons, and motions can be viewed by any member of the public. Wyoming statutes state that certain information held in records be automatically sealed, such as financial details, child support agreements, and information regarding minors or victims of abuse.
What are the types of Divorce Records Available in Wyoming?
In Wyoming there are three ways that a divorce is recorded: divorce certificates, divorce decrees, and full divorce records. While all three are referred to as “divorce records,” there are differences in cost, who can access them, and how to utilize them. A divorce certificate is the most simple divorce record that states a divorce has happened. It names the two parties, the date and time of the divorce, and the location of the divorce. These are the most frequently requested and are most often requested when one of the parties wants to apply for a new marriage certificate or legally change their name. Divorce decrees have a bit more information along with the information that is held within divorce certificates. Divorce decrees list the judge’s final decision on the case and the agreements made during the process. These agreements include financial support such as alimony or child support, division of property and debts, visitation schedules, and any other decisions made by the end of a divorce case. These are available at the Office of the Wyoming District Court Clerk in the county where their divorce was finalized but only by those involved in the divorce or to those with a legal court order. A divorce record is the most full document of a divorce, containing all testimonies, filings, motions, summons, arguments, and evidence that was produced during the process of a divorce. A divorce record technically serves as the case file for a divorce case, and can be requested at the courthouse where the case was heard and finalized.
How Do I Get Divorce Records in Wyoming?
In the state of Wyoming, District or County Court Clerks hold and maintain all family court records, including divorce records. To find a divorce record, requesting parties must first figure out which courthouse the divorce was finalized in. It is also important to note that the different types of divorce records serve different purposes, and it may be necessary for requesting parties to contact the courthouse before making a request in order to figure out which type of document is needed. If the documents are available, requesting parties who are eligible may submit requests in-person or by mail as long as all necessary information and fees are included. Typical information used to access divorce records are:
- The names of the divorced parties as they appear on the record
- The case file number
- The year, or date range, that the divorce was finalized. Note: a large date range may require extra fees to be paid
- Government-issued identification such as driver’s license, state I. D., or passport
Some Wyoming district courts may accept divorce record requests by phone or email. In these cases, copy fees and payment options may differ. The standard fee for a Wyoming divorce record is $10 per copy. If the requesting party needs more than one copy, the fee changes to $1 per every additional first page and 50 cents for the rest of the pages. Fees may also vary depending on the district or county.
How to Obtain a Wyoming Divorce Certificate
To obtain a Wyoming divorce certificate as one of the divorced parties, the Vital Statistics Services of the Wyoming Department of Health can provide copies for all counties and accepts both in-person requests and requests by mail. However, if the divorce was finalized 50 years ago or more, the records will be held and maintained by the Wyoming State Archives.
For in-person requests of divorce certificates, visit the Vital Statistics Services Division with all necessary information and documentation, including:
- The names of divorced parties
- The date or general date range of the finalization of the divorce
- The city or county where the divorce took place
Requesting parties should find and print out the Application for a Certified Copy of a Vital Record with the above information and all other information including copies of government-issued I. D. and then submit the form to the main office at:
Wyoming Department of Health
Vital Statistics Services
2300 Capitol Avenue
Cheyenne, WY 82002
With this method, the fee is $20 for each copy of a record if it is a certified copy. Additionally, there are fees for every extra copy. For in-person requests, the office accepts checks or money orders, made payable to the Wyoming Vital Statistics Services.
Requests for divorce certificates by mail are similar to in-person requests. First, download the Vital Records Application Form, print and fill it out as completely as possible, and place it in a self-addressed envelope with a stamp that includes all necessary fees as stated above, a photocopy of a government-issued I. D., and mail it to:
Vital Statistics Services
2300 Capitol Avenue
Cheyenne, WY 82002
As with in-person requests, requests made by mail are only payable by checks or money orders made out to the Wyoming Vital Statistics Services.
Who Can Obtain Divorce Records in Wyoming?
Wyoming divorce decrees and certificates are confidential documents to members of the public, but both are available for the parties involved in the divorce, including their immediate family, lawyers and the presiding judge. Members of the public can access partial, uncertified records, but cannot access any divorce decrees or divorce certificates.
Are Wyoming Divorce Records Available Online?
Divorce records in Wyoming may be available online through third-party websites, although the cost and accuracy of the information cannot be guaranteed as these sites are not government-sponsored. It may also be possible, depending on the district court where the divorce was finalized, to request these records through email.
How Do I Seal My Divorce Records in Wyoming?
Most details held within Wyoming divorce records are sealed, but some are left public. In order to seal the information that may be left public, the divorced parties must both file separate petitions to seal these records. These petitions must include justification for the removal of the record from public viewing. Ultimately, it is left up to the judge to decide whether or not seal a divorce record.