Founded in 1812, Mobile County is one of the oldest counties in Alabama and the city of Mobile is the county seat. If you are near Mobile, you will have an easy time getting copies of any Mobile County public records you wish because the health department office is located there. That's the office that issues copies of records to the public, and they are open through the week during usual working hours.
The fee for this service is currently at $15 per Mobile County public record ordered, with a reduced price of $6 for any additional copies of the same record you get while you are there. These fees are not refunded if staff can't find your requested material, so double-check the names and dates before you submit your application.
There are forms at the counter, or you can get them from the Alabama Department of Public Health website. Unless you have all the information handy with you, it is usually better to fill them out before you go. You'll need names, dates, locations as well as your own contact information to complete the form.
Take your paperwork to the desk and you will have your Mobile County public records within a few minutes (definitely less than an hour). If you mail in your application, then they usually get them processed in about a week or so. You have to show ID while you are there, and if you are mailing, then include a photocopy of your ID. It won't be processed without it.
Mobile County Birth Records
Mobile County birth records are not generally open to the public until after 125 years have gone by. This is to prevent any identity theft with current records. While they are restricted, the only people who are allowed to get copies are immediate family members (as well as the person who is on the record themselves). After 125 years, you can look up Mobile County birth records at the State Archives or even at your local library.
Mobile County Death Records
Death records are less regulated, though they do have similar privacy laws regarding recent records within a 25-year period. For that time, you can only get Mobile County death records for your parents, children, sibling or spouse. After 25 years, you can get a copy of anyone's, whether you are related or not. Again, the State Archives will also have these registrations once they are open to the public.
Mobile County Marriage Records
Marriage records are always public, so you can order any copies you wish. The state required collection of marriage information in 1936 but the county was already keeping track so records will generally go back farther than that. You can inquire at the health department but also at the Probate courthouse for Mobile County marriage records.
Mobile County Criminal Records
Lastly, there are Mobile County criminal records. These cannot be requested through the health office as they are under the state's jurisdiction. They are also strictly confidential so you can only request your own criminal background files, and the forms will require your fingerprints to make sure of your identity. Requests can be sent to the Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center in Montgomery and the fee for these is $25.