Welcome to the County of Berks
Berks County Register of Wills

DEPARTMENTAL OPERATIONS:

Department Contact Info:

Phone: 610-478-6600
Email: rwills@countyofberks.com

 

 About the Register of Wills/Clerk of Orphans' Court

 

The Register of Wills and Clerk of the Orphan's Court is an elected official who serves as a dual officeholder and whose primary function is to determine whether the document offered for probate should be received as the last will of the decedent. When disputes arise at the time of probate, the Register, as a quasi-judicial officer, is empowered to hold hearings, take testimony, review evidence and render decisions on how the administration of the estate shall proceed.

Responsibilities as Clerk of Orphan's Court include maintaining the docket and files for adoptions, guardianships and other issues which may come before the Orphans' Court Judge, as well as taking applications for, and issuing, marriage licenses.

Finally, the Register of Wills is a mandated keeper of all records filed here, and since those records must be kept forever, the office is a great resource for genealogical information.

 

 Announcements

 
  • COVID-19 Pandemic Information

    AS A RESULT OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, THE CLOSURE OF THE COURTHOUSE AND SERVICES CENTER TO THE PUBLIC, AND THE ASSOCIATED FURLOUGHS OF STAFF, THE FOLLOWING MEASURES HAVE BEEN IMPLEMENTED AND WILL BE IN PLACE FOR THE FORESEEABLE FUTURE.

    PLEASE BE ADVISED:

    The Register's Office will only be "open" from 8:30 am until 4:00 pm Monday through Friday. Please see below for services that are available and how to access them. The Register & Management Staff will be available by email at rwills@countyofberks.com during regular business hours to assist you with your needs. Please return to this website often, as updates will be posted reflecting the evolving situation. Thank you and we wish you good health and safety during this challenging time.

    1. MARRIAGE LICENSE APPLICANTS: PRIORITY IS BEING GIVEN TO BERKS COUNTY RESIDENTS AT THIS TIME. PLEASE CLICK HERE TO VIEW OUR PROCESS PAGE DESCRIBING THE PROCEDURE.
    2. PROBATE OF ESTATES: Please CLICK HERE TO VIEW OUR PROCESS PAGE describing the procedures necessary to open any new estates for the duration of the declared emergency.
    3. PA INHERITANCE TAX PAYMENTS & RETURNS: Tax returns and payments may be mailed or FED/EX'd to the office, as usual, or they may be placed in a drop box in the lobby of the Services Center, accessed through the revolving door near the security post. Receipts will be sent via US Mail. Time stamped copies can be mailed back to you in your prepaid, self-addressed envelope.
    4. MARRIAGE CERTIFICATIONS can be requested by email using rwills@countyofberks.com, US mail, or by phone at 610-478-6600 subject to the hours above. Please do not come to the office at this time. Thank you.
    5. All routine PETITIONS, with a check for payment attached, will be placed in a drop box in the lobby of the Services Center, accessed through the revolving door near the security post. Routine Petitions may also be filed by mail if the Petition is not time-sensitive.
    6. Attorneys with large or MULTIPLE FILINGS shall call 610-478-6600 subject to the hours above, or email rwills@countyofberks.com to schedule an appointment.
    7. EMERGENCY PETITIONS may be filed in person, but an appointment will still be necessary. Please call 610-478-6600 subject to the hours above, or email rwills@countyofberks.com prior to filing, so emergencies can be coordinated with the Court. There is one Judge sitting for emergency motions only.
    8. The RESEARCH CENTER is closed. Title Searchers may view records on-line, call 610-478-6600 subject to the hours above, or for assistance use the email link below. Genealogy requests should be emailed to rwills@countyofberks.com.
     
  • New Fee Schedules Effective 4/1/2020

    ​Please be advised that effective April 1, 2020, pursuant to 42 P.S. Section 21022.1, the Register of Wills will be implementing a new Bill of Costs for the Register of Wills and Orphans' Court.

    Thank You, Larry Medaglia and Staff

    Fee Schedule: Orphans' Court (Effective 4/1/2020)
    Fee Schedule: Register of Wills (Effective 4/1/2020)

  • Orphans' Court Complete Rules
    The Updated Orphans' Court Rules, with incorporated amendments, are now available.
  • Orphans' Court Procedural Changes
    • When filing documents, please do not staple the original -- it makes for easier scanning.​
    • Because we do not have electronic filing, please make sure all filed documents contain an original signature, in blue ink.
     

Contact Information

Address
Berks County Register of Wills
Berks County Services Center
633 Court Street, 2nd Floor
Reading, PA 19601


Phone:610-478-6600
Email: rwills@countyofberks.com

Office Hours:  Monday thru Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.