How to register a death


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After you have the Medical Certificate of Cause of Death, you can register the death at your local register office. This must be done within five days, or eight days in Scotland.

Find your local register office

You can find your local register office online.

If you use the register office in the area where your loved one died, you’ll be given the documents you need immediately. If you use a different office, the documents will be sent to the office in the area where your loved one dies. This process can take a few days.

At some register offices you will need to book an appointment to register a death. Check beforehand.

Who can register the death?

The next of kin or a relative can register the death. If a relative is not available, you are allowed to register a death if you were there at the time of death, are an administrator from the hospital where they died, or if you are in charge of funeral arrangements.

What you need to register a death

You must take the Medical Certificate of Cause of Death with you when you go to register the death. This must be signed by a Doctor.

If possible, it may help if you bring additional information such as their birth certificate, council tax bill, driving licence, marriage certificate, passport or proof of address.

You will need to provide the following information to the registrar:

  • The person’s full name and any previous names
  • Their date and place of birth
  • Their last address
  • Their occupation
  • Full name, date of birth and occupation of their spouse or civil partner
  • Whether they were receiving State Pension or other benefits

What documents you’ll receive

Once you have registered the death you will receive a Certificate for Burial or Cremation and a Certificate of Registration of Death (also known as a Death Certificate).

You can also buy extra copies of the Death Certificate. You will need these to manage the estate.