In Times of Bereavement

When a relative or close friend passes away it is often a difficult time, and there is lots to do an organise. Visit for more information and support through this process.

If Death Occurs At Home

  • Telephone the doctor who will visit to confirm that death has taken place.
  • Contact a funeral director.
  • Arrange to collect the doctor’s medical certificate of death (usually from the surgery).
  • Take this to the registrars office, (together with the deceased’s medical card and birth certificate, if available) for the area in which the death took place. Alternatively you can register by declaration at any convenient registrars office but certificates will not be available as these will have to be posted to you a few days later.
  • The registrar will normally issue a green coloured certificate for you to give to your funeral director who will look after necessary arrangements for the funeral. The registrar will also issue a white notification certificate for the DSS. They will also enquire as to the number of certified copies you require for dealing with the deceased finances (a fee is payable for each copy).

If The Death Occurs In Hospital

  • Contact a funeral director to inform him his services are required.
  • Collect the certificate from the hospital then follow steps 4 and 5 as above

Note For Cremation

Your funeral director will usually liaise directly with the surgery regarding the additional certification required.

Register The Death

If the death has been reported to the coroner (or Procurator Fiscal in Scotland) they must give permission before registering the death.

You can register the death if you are a relative, a witness to the death, a hospital administrator or the person making the arrangements with the funeral directors.

You can use the Register a Death page on the website that will guide you through the process. This will also explain the registration process for Scotland and Northern Ireland.