Registering a Death
Registering a death is an important step to take when a person dies. When someone dies, the death must be registered with the local registrar. It is a legal requirement that a death is registered within 5 days of its occurrence. However, this period can be extended under certain circumstances.
How to Register a Death
You can register at the Register Office in the DISTRICT where the death occurred, or you can go to any Register Office in England and Wales and make a declaration of the particulars required. However, if you opt for a declaration, there will be a slight delay in receiving certificates and paperwork, as these will be posted from the receiving Register Office.
Who Can Register the Death?
- A relative or civil partner of the deceased
- A person present at the death
- Someone who lives at the premises where the person died
- A person arranging the funeral
What Will the Registrar Need to Know?
It may help you to prepare for your visit to know that the Registrar will require the following information:
- The medical certificate of cause of death from the doctor, if a coroner is not involved
- The date and place of death
- The full name of the deceased (and maiden surname if appropriate)
- The date and place of birth of the deceased (a birth certificate would be helpful)
- The deceased’s occupation, and the full name and occupation of their spouse or civil partner
- The deceased’s usual home address
- Whether the deceased was in receipt of a pension from public funds
- The date of birth of the deceased’s spouse or civil partner, if alive
- The NHS medical card number for the deceased. However, please do not delay registration if this is not available
The Registrar will ask you some questions to obtain the above information and will then print the details for you to check. It is most important that this document is checked carefully, as mistakes can easily be rectified at this point. Once the register is signed the Registrar will not always be able to correct any errors locally and may have to apply to the Registrar General for authority to correct.
It would be helpful if you could bring any of the following documentary evidence with you to the appointment to confirm the deceased person’s details:
- Driving Licence
- Proof of address (utility bill)
- NHS Medical Card
- Any change of name documents or deeds
- All birth and marriage or civil partnership certificates of the deceased
It is also important that you bring your own ID to confirm your identity. If you cannot provide the supporting documentation this will not alone prevent the registration from taking place, but it would be helpful to provide it wherever possible so that the records are accurate.
What will I be issued with?
You will be issued with the following forms free of charge:
- A green form for the funeral director. This is required in order to make the funeral arrangements.
- If the death was referred to the Coroner other procedures may apply.
- A white form for State Benefits and pensions purposes. This will sort out any pensions and benefits the deceased or his/her dependents were entitled to or receiving.
Contact Arthur Peake & Sons
If you require further advice about registering a death, then do not hesitate to get in touch. A member of our team will be happy to provide information relating to your queries. Alternatively, you can check the Directgov website.