We will always be sensitive to the needs of grieving families, but the law does require all deaths to be registered within five days. You will need to come in to your local registration service point to register the death. To make this process more straightforward for you, we offer an online booking service.Register a death online »
In England and Wales a death should be registered within 5 days of its occurrence, and in the district in which it occurred.
If a death has been reported to the Coroner for any reason, you cannot register the death until the authorisation of the Coroner has been received by the Registrar, sometimes this may take longer than 5 days, this is not something that can be helped.
If the death of your relative has been referred by the Coroner for Inquest, you will not register the death at all, this will be done by the Coroner once the inquest has concluded. Soon after the death has occurred the Coroner will issue you with an interim certificate of death which you can use to deal with the estate of the deceased.
If for some reason it's not possible to attend a register office in the district in which the death occurred, it's possible to attend at any register office to give the information required, however you should speak to the registrars in the district in which the death occurred in order that they can make arrangements to transfer any paperwork to the office at which you will be attending. Please be aware that registering in this manner may cause delays to any funeral arrangements as this service relies on the postal service.
Who can register a death (in order of preference)?
- A close relative of the deceased
- A person present at the death
- The occupier of premises where the death occurred (usually the manager of a nursing home or a senior administrator for a hospital)
- The person responsible for instructing the funeral director (but not the undertaker)
What information will you need to provide to the Registrar about the deceased?
- The date and place of death
- The date and place of birth of the deceased person
- The full name and any other names of the deceased (and maiden surname where appropriate)
- The former occupation of the deceased
- The full name/occupation/date of birth and usual address of the husband/wife/or Civil partner of the deceased.
- The address of the person who has died
- Information regarding any public sector pension
What documents should I bring along when I register the death?
- If available the NHS Number or NHS medical card of the deceased
- Birth/Marriage certificates or passport of the deceased to try to ensure that the information recorded is accurate
- Any blue badges or bus passes
- If you've opted for the Tell Us Once Service please bring along the national insurance number of the deceased and their next of kin please check the list for a full inventory of all of the things needed to complete this service.
What information will I need to give to the registrar about me when I register the death?
- Your relationship to the deceased
- Your full name
- Your usual address
- If you have opted to use the Tell us Once service please review the list of information before you come.
What documents will the Registrar give to me after I have Registered?
- Certified copies of the death certificate – these are copies of the register entry and are what are required by banks and building societies and other organisations such as insurers and financial institutions in which and shares may be held by the deceased. There is no original death certificate – you won't be given one of these free of charge, all copies have to be paid for. It's cheaper to buy them at the time of registration than at any time afterwards.
Certificate of burial or cremation
- This form is often referred to as “the green form” and it serves as proof to the funeral director and cemetery or cremation authorities that a funeral may take place. In some cases this document may be issued by the Coroner, mostly when a post mortem examination has taken place.