Population Procedures

Activities related to population procedures in Estonia include documenting family events, maintaining the population register, and maintaining the archive of families. It also means ensuring that given and surnames are used properly and the Estonian traditions and heritage of naming are upheld.


Population procedures include:

Vital statistics procedures

Vital statistics procedures include registering births, deaths, marriages and divorces, and changes in vital statistics data in the population register.

Further information »

Residence procedures

Residence procedures comprise registering or changing one’s residence-related data.

Further information »

Name related procedures

Name related procedures include applying for a new given or surname or both given and surname.

Further information »


     Rahvastikutoimingute avaldused




Family archives of the Ministry of the Interior

The family archives of the Ministry of the Interior were established on 1 July 1926 when the Family Archives of the Ministry of the Interiors was created under the authority of the ministries general department. Its main task was to administer the vital records archives, to issue documents on the basis of the records, manage vital statistics offices and monitor their operations.

Subsequent examples of parish registers and population records from 1 July 1926 are stored in the archives of the Ministry of the Interior, including the files from 1920-1944 containing foreign names that were converted on compliance with Estonian language use. The family records from Pechory, or Vilo, Rootova, Kalda, Linnuse and the rural municipalities of Pechory, Harju, Jõgeva and Ida-Viru counties are transferred to the National Archives of Estonia. An archive request can be submitted through the VAU virtual research facility http://www.ra.ee/vau/index.php/en/enquiry/form/index.

For researchers of genealogical trees, we recommend seeking further information on the following websites: National Archives, History Archives, Estonian Genealogical Society and Estonian Biographical Center.

In order to find population records prepared before 01.07.1926 and to research genealogical trees, suitable means include:
  • metrics and parish records of the Evangelical Lutheran congregations;
  • metrics and records of religious societies from within Apostolic Orthodox congregations and other confessions of population events before 30.06.1926 (except in the city of Tallinn);
  • statements of the appointing of family names in Pechory county and the rural municipality of Narva located in the History Archives;
  • metric records of the Tallinn Evangelical Lutheran congregations and Apostolic Orthodox congregations, and registration records of population events of other confessions before 30.06.1926;
  • family registers opened for the citizens of the Republic of Estonia who lived in Tallinn and Nõmme in the years 1926 – 1944, and which are located in the Tallinn City Archives.
Last updated: 24 March 2021