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How to register a death

This section is designed to guide you through the process involved in registering a death. For more help or advice, contact your nearest NAFD accredited funeral director.

  • Once you have the medical certificate, the death must be formally recorded.

  • Register the death at a Registry Office in England and Wales or Registrar of Deaths in Northern Ireland.

  • You normally need to register the death within five days.

  • Any death which occurs in Scotland must be registered within eight days by the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages. The law allows a death to be registered in any registration district in Scotland.

  • You may need to make an appointment to see the registrar. You will need to take the medical certificate with you when you register the death.

  • Once registered, the registrar will issue the death certificate – which is needed to deal with the will, and with money and other assets left by the deceased. Even though there is a charge for having additional copies, it’s often wise to get several copies of the death certificate if you need to write to different companies.
    The registrar will also give you a green certificate to give to the deceased’s funeral director. This allows burial or cremation to proceed. The registrar may also give you form BD8 which will need to be sent to the local Jobcentre Plus or Social Security. If the deceased was receiving any benefits or tax credits, advise the relevant offices that were making the payments - you can use the links below to the tax credit helpline and Jobcentre.


When registering a death, you'll need to take the following:

  • Medical certificate of the cause of death (signed by a doctor)

And if available take the deceased's:

  • Birth certificate

  • Marriage/civil partnership certificates 

  • NHS Medical Card

Ecclesiastical Planning Services Limited (EPSL) Reg. No. 2644860. EPSL is an Appointed Representative of Ecclesiastical Financial Advisory Services Limited (EFAS) Reg. No. 2046087. EFAS is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Firm Reference Number 738805 (EPSL) and 126123 (EFAS). Both companies are registered in England at Beaufort House, Brunswick Road, Gloucester GL1 1JZ.
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