One of the first things that needs to be done when someone dies is to register their death. It’s a time-sensitive law requirement which must be done prior to organising the funeral, notifying the relevant departments and institutions, dealing with the deceased person’s Will etc.
This guide shows you what you need to do to register a death in the UK:
All deaths must be registered with the Registrar for Births, Deaths and Marriages within:
The above timeframes include weekends and Bank holidays.
Most deaths can be registered by a family member, close relative or anyone else, providing that they meet the following requirements:
In addition to the above, a death in Northern Ireland can also be registered by:
You cannot delegate the responsibility of registering the death to anyone else. Call your local Register Office if you are not sure who should register the death.
You can’t register the death without the Medical Certificate Of Cause Of Death.
You will also need your passport, driving licence or some other form of ID to proof your identity.
If the death was expected and happened at home or in hospital, you need to ask the doctor who is involved with the case to complete a Medical Certificate Of Cause Of Death. You need this certificate in order to register the Death.
If the death was sudden, it needs to be investigated. In those instances, the emergency doctor or the police will notify the Coroner whose job it is to find out how and why the person died. In Scotland, sudden deaths are investigated by the Procurator Fiscal.
Although you can register the death without them, it helps if you bring the person’s:
If they were receiving a State Pension or any other benefits and you have access to those documents, you can bring them to the Registrar too.
When registering the Death, the Registrar will need the following information about the deceased from you:
When you register the Death, the Registrar will give you the following documents:
Please note that if you use the Tell US Once service, that won’t be necessary.
You will need it when dealing with banks, utilities companies, Government departments, solicitors etc. It’s a good idea to ask for extra copies of the Death Certificate whilst there but please note that they are not free.
Did we miss any of the steps required for registering a death in the UK?
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