Though Hawaii may be one of the most recent additions to the United States of America, there is still a long history there to be explored.
The privacy laws on vital records aren't very harsh and you will have little problem requesting the Hawaii death records you need. Records where the date of death is more than 75 years ago have no restrictions at all, and can be accessed by anyone. If you are looking for more recent events, you only have to be a relative of the deceased. Unlike most other states, that restriction doesn't mean you must be an immediate relative. Cousins, aunts and uncles would all count as a relation in this case.
You can get the form for application at the Hawaii state website (http://hawaii.gov/health/vital-records/pdf/death.pdf). Once its filled out, you can either mail it in, or hand deliver it to the vital records office. You're going to have to wait for it no matter which route you go. A drop-off will mean you go back in about 10 days to pick up your records, and if you mail it you will get your records back in about 3 weeks.
If you are in Honolulu, you can do the drop off at the Health Department office at 1250 Punchbowl Street. Its in room 103. The mailing address is State Department of Health, Office of Health Status Monitoring, Issuance/Vital Statistics Section, PO Box 3378 Honolulu, HI 96801 USA.
There is a fee of $10 USD to get a Hawaii death record, whether they find the registration or not. You can pay this in cash if you go to the office, but will need either a certified check or money order for a mail-in application. No personal checks. Make them out to the "State Department of Health".
When filling out the forms, you have to identify the person you are seeking by name, birth date, death date, place of death and their parents names if you know them. A social security number is very helpful too if happen to have it. You will have to also provide your own information so the records can be sent back to you, and you need to include a copy of photo ID if you are looking for a certificate that is more than 75 years old. You need to indicate what your relationship is to the deceased in that case as well.
Hawaii death records will go back to around 1842, and typically have the usual information on them. The person's name, age or date of birth, date of death, place of death and occupation. Sometimes the parent's names are included as well. Many older records are in Hawaiian, not English so you may need to translate them once you get your papers back.
You can also look up old Hawaii death records (pre-1909) at the Hawaii State Library. It's only the indexes, but it can be a good place to do some research before sending in your actual applications.
To order Hawaii death certificates, you will need to:
Fully complete the Hawaii Death Certificate application and print out the full form.
Take your government-issued photo ID with you when you apply in person, or obtain a legible copy to send with your mailed request.
Return the application and appropriate fee to the Department of Health. The first copy of a Hawaii death record costs $10, and only cashier's checks, certified checks, and money orders are accepted.
If you require additional assistance accessing Hawaii death records, you should contact the Department of Health:
Hawaii Department of Health
Office of Health Status Monitoring
Issuance/Vital Statistics Section
P.O. Box 3378
Honolulu, HI 96801
How To Request Hawaii Death Records
Hawaii death records, like all vital records for the state, are maintained by the Office of Health Status Monitoring. Also like other vital records, Hawaii death records are considered confidential for 75 years. Prior to this time period, the records can only be accessed by persons who are able to demonstrate a tangible interest in them.
Methods for Accessing Hawaii Death Records
All requests for vital records can be made to the Office of Health Status Monitoring in one of two ways: by mailing in an application and by visiting the office in person. All requests will need a completed application, government-issued ID, and the appropriate fees to be filled.
Who Cannot Access Hawaii Death Records?
All Hawaii vital records are confidential until 75 years after the event in question. This limits the access to only select people who are involved in the event. For Hawaii death records, only the direct spouse and relatives or legal representative can access the Hawaii death record. All other requests must be able to demonstrate a direct and tangible interest in order to receive a copy of the record.