A death must be registered within 5 days of it occurring, unless the Coroner is investigating the circumstances relating to the death. In certain circumstances the five day period can be extended. The death should registered by a near relative or executor. When the coroner isn’t involved, a Doctor will issue the Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (MCCD). This needs presenting to the registrar along with a birth certificate, marriage certificate (if applicable), medical card and NHS numbers, if they are available.
The information required by the registrar will include the full name of the deceased and their maiden surname if they had been a married woman, and any previous names used. You will also need to know their usual address, date and place of birth, the date and place of death and whether they were in receipt of a pension from public funds. The registrar will also require their occupation and, if the deceased person was a married woman or widow, the full name and occupation of her husband. You will also need to give your name, address and details of your relationship to the deceased.
When you’re registering a death you will be given the option to use the Tell Us Once scheme, where you will be able to tell the authorities just once about your change of circumstances. They will notify local and government agencies on your behalf, saving you precious time and effort. Upon completion of the registration, the registrar will issue you with a Green Certificate. This form is free of charge and must be delivered to the funeral director at the earliest opportunity. If the coroner is involved the process does differ and this form may not be issued. The registrar will also issue you with a BD8 Form. This form is free of charge and is used to notify the Department of Work and Pensions of the death.
Death Certificate copies can be purchased from the registrar at a cost of £4.00 per copy. These will be needed to notify the deceased’s bank, life insurance company, private pension company, probate amongst others. Further copies can be purchased afterwards at a cost of £10.00 per copy. An appointment must be made for a death to be registered at any register office. To find your nearest office, please see our local registrars page.