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England - Procedure to Register a Death

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  • In England and Wales, you normally need to register the death within five days. It's best to go to the register office in the area where the person died, as otherwise it may take longer to get the documents you need and this could delay the funeral.
  • It will take about half an hour to register the death. You may need to make an appointment beforehand.
  • You'll find contact details for the register office in the local area phone book or you can search online below.

Search for your local register office

Use our interactive tool to help you register a death
  • How you register a death depends on the circumstances. You can find more help for your situation by using the Directgov tool below.


Required Documents[edit]

When registering a death, you'll need to take the following:

  • Medical certificate of the cause of death (signed by a doctor)
  • Organ donor card
  • Religion

And, if available:

  • Birth certificate
  • Marriage or civil partnership certificate
  • NHS Medical Card

Documents needed in order to notify benefits/tax credits offices

  • Correspondence confirming payment to the deceased of benefits (normally Jobcentre Plus office), tax credits (HM Revenue & Customs) and/or State Pension (Department for Work and Pensions)
  • Child Benefit Number (if relevant)

Documents relating to a partner or relative

  • Proof of your relationship to the deceased (eg marriage/civil partnership or birth certificate, child's birth certificate naming both parents)
  • Your social security card/National Insurance number if you will be claiming/changing benefits

Documents/information needed by the person sorting out the deceased's affairs

  • The personal representative is the person formally responsible for sorting out the deceased person's estate, paying any taxes and debts and distributing the estate. They will need the following documents (where relevant):
  • Documents needed by the personal representative:
    • Sealed copies of the grant of representation (probate/letters of administration)
  • Documents relating to the death:
    • The will if there is one
    • Death certificate (often needed when requesting access to funds; it's best to order at least two extra certified copies when registering the death)
  • Savings/investments related:
    • Bank and building society account statements
    • Investment statements/share certificates
    • Personal or company pension account statements
  • Insurance:
    • Life insurance documents (including mortgage cover)
    • General insurance policies (home, car, travel, medical etc)
  • State pension/benefits:
    • Relevant correspondence or statements from Jobcentre Plus (for benefits) and/or The Pension Service
  • Amounts owing by the deceased:
    • Mortgage statement
    • Credit card statements
    • Utility/ Council Tax bills in the deceased's name
    • Rental agreements/statements (private or local authority)
    • Other outstanding bills
    • Leases, hire purchase agreements or similar (eg for equipment, car or furniture)
    • Educational loan statements
    • Any other loan statements
  • Amounts owed to the deceased:
    • Outstanding invoices if the deceased ran a business
    • Written/verbal evidence of other money owed to the deceased
  • Property:
    • Property keys
    • Property deeds or leases for any property they owned, you can get copies from Land Registry if the property is registered (see the link, Getting details about land or property ownership')
  • Other possessions:
    • Existing valuations of property such as jewellery, painting and similar (though an up to date market valuation will be required)
    • Any existing inventories of property/possessions
    • Safety box deposit information
  • Employment or self-employment:
    • PAYE form P60 and latest payslips if the deceased was employed
    • Recent tax returns and tax calculation statements (if relevant)
  • Business related:
    • Company registration documents, accounts, tax and VAT returns if they had a business
Other documents
  • The following documents and information will be required by the personal representative or close rela

Office Locations & Contacts[edit]

Please list down the office locations that can be approached for applying. External links can also be used for specifying office locations.



If the person died in a house or hospital, the death can be registered by:

  • A relative
  • Someone present at the death
  • An occupant of the house
  • An official from the hospital
  • The person making the arrangements with the funeral directors

Deaths that occurred anywhere else can be registered by:

  • A relative
  • Someone present at the death
  • The person who found the body
  • The person in charge of the body
  • The person making the arrangements with the funeral directors

Most deaths are registered by a relative. The registrar would normally only allow other people if there are no relatives available.


Explain the fees structure which is required for obtaining the certificate/document.


Explain the time until which the certificate/document is valid.
e.g. Birth Certificate Valid Forever

Documents to Use[edit]

Please attach documents that can be used by people. e.g. links

Sample Documents[edit]

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Processing Time[edit]

Please explain processing time taken in obtaining the document/certificate.

Related Videos[edit]

Videos explaining the procedure or to fill the applications. 
Attach videos using the following tag <&video type="website">video ID|width|height<&/video&> from external websites.
Please remove the "&" inside the tags during implementation.
Website = allocine, blip, dailymotion, facebook, gametrailers, googlevideo, html5, metacafe, myspace, revver, 
sevenload, viddler, vimeo, youku, youtube
width = 560, height = 340, Video ID = Can be obtained from the URL of webpage where the video is displayed.
e.g In the following url "" Video ID is "Y0US7oR_t3M". 


  • You need to register a person's death within five days.
  • You can register a persons death online through the interactive tool
  • You can register a persons death at the register office where the person died.
  • A stillbirth normally needs to be registered within 42 days, and at the latest within three months. In many cases this can be done at the hospital or at the local register office.
Registering a stillbirth record
Documents and help you will receive
  • If a post-mortem is not being held, the registrar will give you:
    • A certificate for burial or cremation (called the 'green form'), giving permission for the body to be buried or to apply for the body to be cremated
    • A certificate of registration of death (form BD8), issued for social security purposes if the person was on a state pension or benefits (read the information on the back, complete and return it, if it applies)
  • You'll be able to buy one or more death certificates at this time (the price varies between local authorities). These will be needed by the executor or administrator when sorting out the person's affairs.
  • The registrar will also give you a booklet called 'What to do after a death', with advice on wills, funerals and financial help. You can download a copy below.
  • You may need to tell a number of different government departments and agencies about the death. The registrar can advise you on how to go about this. Some local authorities have started offering a new service to help you report a death, and the registrar will let you know if it's available in your area.
  • If a post-mortem is needed, the coroner will issue any documents you need as quickly as possible afterwards.
  • If there is an error in a death record it may be possible for details to be changed or added. Use the 'Correcting a record' link below for more information.
What to do after a death in England or Wales
Telling the government someone has died - the 'Tell Us Once' service
Correcting a record
Removing a body from England or Wales
  • You'll need permission from a coroner in the local district before a body can be moved out of England and Wales. You can find a local coroner using the Coroners' Society of England and Wales website by following the link below.
  • The rules are complicated but the coroner's office will be able to give you information about what you need to do. You will need to give the coroner any certificate you have for the burial or cremation.
  • The coroner will let you know when the body can be moved. This is usually after four days, but in special circumstances the coroner can agree for the body to be moved sooner.
  • The coroner will issue a removal notice (form 104). Part of this notice is then sent to the registrar of births, deaths and marriages.
The Coroners' Society of England and Wales
If the death is referred to a coroner

In a small number of cases - where the cause of death is unclear, sudden or suspicious - the doctor, hospital or registrar will report the death to the coroner. The coroner must then decide if there should be further investigation. The registrar cannot register the death until the coroner's decision is made.

Other things that need to be done
  • You can find more help in the articles below.
Arranging a funeral
What to do when someone dies
Documents and information needed when someone dies

Required Information[edit]

  • The persons full name at time of death
  • Any names previously used, including maiden surname
  • The persons date and place of birth (town and county if born in the UK and country if born abroad)
  • Their last address
  • Their occupation
  • Date of marriage/civil partnership if certificate not available
  • The full name, date of birth and occupation of a surviving spouse or civil partner
  • If they were getting a state pension or any other state benefit
  • Religion
  • Is he Organ donor
  • Other information
    • Address book/information listing close friends and relatives who will need to be informed
    • Passport
    • Vehicle registration documents if the deceased owned a car
    • Driving licence/parking permits/travel cards/Blue Badge for disabled parking
    • Membership cards or documents/correspondence showing membership of clubs, associations, Trade Unions and similar


Need for the Document[edit]

You normally need to register a person's death within five days, and when someone you love has died this can seem like a daunting task. Following instructions and procedures will help you to register a death.

Information which might help[edit]

Enter other informations which might help.

Other uses of the Document/Certificate[edit]

Please explain what are other uses of obtaining this document/certificate.
e.g. Birth Certificate can be used as proof of identity.

External Links[edit]

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More information which might help people.