California death records from 1905 to present require payment of a fee to the California Department of Public Health. As of March 2015, the fee was $21 per death certificate. The records can be ordered by mail from the CDPH or county recorder offices.
In addition to payment of the fee, requests for death records must include a completed application form. A notarized sworn statement is also required for authorized death certificates. Informational copies, which cannot be used to establish identity, do not require a sworn statement but carry the same fee. The CDPH death record webpage includes a link to a list with contact information for county recorder offices.