Iwona's Sources - Polish Registry Office Records

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Records in Polish Registry Offices from 1908 - 2007

Registry offices are located in Poland where there is a local administration of a commune council. Cities have as many registry offices as there are administration districts . Registry offices are known in Poland by the abbreviaton USC (Urzad Stanu Cywilnego). Polish law rules require record storage; all records which have 100 years old "should" be in registry offices.

"Should" because in a practice they can be much older or much younger. If they are younger - then it means that missed part of records was destroyed during last war or in a fire. Older records because one book can contains records for example from 1874 to 1905 - in such case this book will be in registry office till records of last year - 1905 - be 100 years old, so this book be stored till 2004. Then the manager of registry office is instructed to send this book to regional state archives. Actually, I saw many books which are much older then 100 years and they are still stored in registry offices. Why ? Usually because of a clerk's negligence, sometimes because clerk treats the archive books as their treasure.

Managers of registry offices are instructed to find given records and provide a certificate. You may ask about copy but often they refuse to copy records. In reality there is no rule.

The fee for a full certificate is $15. A shorter certificate is $10 - and usually there is no difference between these documents. Most managers do not know English - so any requests in foreign language can be problem. The certificate can be obtained only by the family. You must explain the relationship - but you do not need prove it. If you want other person to obtain any record - then such person must have your authorization letter - stamped by public notary. Some managers additionally require verification of a Polish Embassy and sworn translation. To avoid such unreasonable beaucracy - it is better to apply for a given record by yourself . The only one small problem is with money transfer which can cost more then a fee for record.

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Last Updated on July 7, 2017