Peru Civil Registration

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How to Find the Records[edit | edit source]

Online Collections[edit | edit source]

Offices to Contact[edit | edit source]

The Supreme Court of Justice (Corte Superior de Justicia) in Lima, Peru has duplicates of civil registration records. If your request to the municipality is unsuccessful, write for records sent to the Supreme Court of Justice of the Republic (Corte Superior de Justicia de la República).

Archivo de la Corte Suprema de la República
Palacio de Justicia
Jirón Manuel Cuadros s/n
Cercado de Lima
Lima 1, PERÚ
Telephone: 51-14-28-3690

Public Archives Directorate, General Archive of the Nation
The birth, marriage and death certificates of Lima Provinces, Metropolitana and its districts, as well as the Constitutional Province of Callao and its districts are guarded until 1997 (in some cases until 1999).
Jr. Camaná 125 with Pasaje Piura s / n - Cercado de Lima
Telephone Central: (01) 426 - 7221

Writing to a Municipality for Records[edit | edit source]

Civil registration records are kept at the local civil registration office (Oficina del Registro Civil) in each municipality. You must determine the town where your ancestor lived before you can find the records. A civil registration district may include several towns or a small section of a large city. You may need to use gazetteers and other geographic references to identify the place your ancestor lived and the civil registration office that served it (see Peru Gazetteers). In addition to the town, you need to know an approximate year in which the birth, marriage, divorce, or death occurred.This method is not always reliable. Officials might or might not respond.
Write a brief request in Spanish to the proper office using this address as a guide replacing the information in parentheses:

Oficino del Registro Civil
(street name, number)
(city), (region)
(postal code)

Historical Background[edit | edit source]

In most of the municipalities of Peru, civil authorities began registering births in 1886, marriages in 1886, and deaths in 1857.[1] Due to political situations, civil registration for some municipalities may have begun after 1886.

From 1936 to the present, personal civil registers include naturalization, adoption, legitimization of children, declaration of mental competence, declarations of deaths not otherwise registered, marriage annulments, and divorces.

In the Lima municipal archives, there are death registers for 1857–1867, and birth, marriage, and death registers of Peruvians born abroad for 1886–1911.

There are also registers of captives for 1905–1926. These are registers of births to Peruvian families in the department of Tacna and the province of Tarapaca (Chile), which were under the jurisdiction of the Chilean government.

Coverage[edit | edit source]

The 1892 Peruvian Civil Law made civil registration mandatory. By 1895, the archives included almost all individuals who lived in Peru. Records of naturalization, adoption, and legitimacy and recognition of children are included in the early birth records.

Today, Peru’s borders include areas that were not part of Peru in 1886. For these areas, the beginning of civil registration varies. For example, the department of Tacna, which was part of Chile from 1880 to 1929, began registration in 1884 for births and 1885 for marriages and deaths.

Information Recorded in the Records[edit | edit source]

Births (Nacimientos)

Birth registers give:

  • Document number
  • Registration date
  • Name
  • Gender
  • Date and place of birth

Birth records may include the following about parents:

  • Ages
  • Birthplaces
  • Residences
  • Nationalities
  • Marital status
  • Professions
  • Number of other children born to the mother

The records may also give similar information about the informant, who may be a relative, and the grandparents.

Corrections to a birth record were usually added as a marginal note.

Marriages (Casamientos)

Peruvian law requires marriages to be recorded in civil records prior to a church marriage. Marriage registers give:

  • Marriage date
  • Names of bride and groom
  • Ages
  • Places of residence
  • Sometimes places of birth
  • Names of the parents and witnesses
  • Information about the witnesses

Marriage information (Información matrimonial) in Peru from 1900 to the present includes:

  • Certificates of birth, baptism, good conduct, marriageability
  • A medical certificate
  • Residence

Early civil marriage records may give more information than church records. Early entries usually included:

  • Names and ages of the bride and groom
  • Marriage date and place

Later entries include:

  • Couple’s occupations
  • Civil status
  • Residences
  • Birthplaces
  • Some records also have the names of the parents and grandparents

Deaths (Defunciones)

Death records were usually registered within a few days of the death, in the town or city where the person died.

Early death records give:

  • Name
  • Date
  • Place of death

Later death registers usually include:

  • Deceased’s age or date of birth (and sometimes the birthplace)
  • Residence or street address
  • Occupation
  • Cause of death
  • Burial information
  • Name of the informant (who is often a relative)
  • Name of spouse
  • Names of parents

Extract Forms[edit | edit source]

The following extract forms were created by Dr. George Ryskamp, JD, AG. These particular forms are designed to be used for Spanish research; however, they can help in other research areas, such as Italy, France, Portugal, etc. Click on the type of record form you would like to use and print it for your own files.

Birth/Baptism Extract Form

Marriage Extract Form

Death/Burial Extract Form

These forms are designed to help you quickly analyze and organize your documents. They can become a personal index for your family records.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Ryskamp, George. Finding Your Hispanic Roots. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1997.