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LRB-3120/1
SWB:klm
2017 Special Session
2017 - 2018 LEGISLATURE
Redacting cause and manner of death on death certificates
Preliminary Draft - Not Ready For Introduction
January 5, 2018 - Introduced by Representatives August, C. Taylor, Loudenbeck,
Ballweg, Berceau, Steffen, Sinicki, Subeck and Fields. Referred to
Committee on Health.
AB817,1,4 1An Act to repeal 69.18 (1m) (a) 3. and 69.21 (1) (b) 4.; to amend 69.18 (1m)
2(intro.), 69.20 (2) (c) and 69.21 (1) (b) 5.; and to create 69.18 (1m) (b) 4. of the
3statutes; relating to: omission of cause and manner of death on copies of death
4certificates.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
This bill expands the option for a person to request a copy of a death certificate
that omits the cause of death and establishes the option for a person to request a copy
of a death certificate that omits the manner of death.
A death certificate consists of certain fact-of-death information, including the
manner of the decedent's death, the cause of death, and injury-related data. Under
current law, certain individuals may request a copy of a death certificate, including
certain immediate family members of a deceased person and other authorized
individuals.
Current law allows the registrar that issues a copy of the death certificate to
issue, upon request, a copy that does not include the cause of death, but only for
deaths that occurred before January 1, 2003. Under current law, a person does not
have the option to request a copy of a death certificate that excludes the cause and
manner of death for a death that occurred after December 31, 2002.

This bill expands the options for an authorized requester, allowing a registrar
to issue, upon request, a copy of a death certificate that does not include the cause
or manner of death, regardless of when the death occurred. The bill also removes the
manner of death information from the standard fact-of-death information to be
included on a copy of a death certificate. The bill instead includes the manner of
death as part of a list of extended fact-of-death information provided to a person
seeking a copy of a death certificate only upon request. The bill allows a person to
request a copy of a death certificate that includes the extended fact-of-death
information, but omits the cause and manner of death. The bill also limits access to
the manner of death information until 50 years after a decedent's date of death.
For further information see the state fiscal estimate, which will be printed as
an appendix to this bill.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
AB817,1 1Section 1 . 69.18 (1m) (intro.) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB817,2,32 69.18 (1m) Format. (intro.) Beginning on January 1, 2003, a A certificate of
3death shall consist of the following parts:
AB817,2 4Section 2 . 69.18 (1m) (a) 3. of the statutes is repealed.
AB817,3 5Section 3 . 69.18 (1m) (b) 4. of the statutes is created to read:
AB817,2,66 69.18 (1m) (b) 4. The manner of the decedent's death.
AB817,4 7Section 4 . 69.20 (2) (c) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB817,2,128 69.20 (2) (c) Except as provided under sub. (3), until 50 years after a decedent's
9date of death, the state registrar and a local registrar may not permit inspection of
10or disclose information contained in the portion under s. 69.18 (1m) (b) 2. and 3., 3.,
11and 4.
of the certificate of death to anyone except to a person specified under sub. (1),
12or to a direct descendent of the decedent.
AB817,5 13Section 5 . 69.21 (1) (b) 4. of the statutes is repealed.
AB817,6 14Section 6 . 69.21 (1) (b) 5. of the statutes is amended to read:
AB817,3,5
169.21 (1) (b) 5. A copy of a death certificate issued under par. (a) for a death that
2occurs after December 31, 2002,
shall be on a form that contains only fact-of-death
3information specified in s. 69.18 (1m) (a), except that a requester may, upon request,
4obtain either a form that contains extended fact-of-death information specified in
5s. 69.18 (1m) (b) or a copy that does not include the cause or manner of death.
AB817,3,66 (End)
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