A number of forms are required to organise a funeral, and you can get further advice on them from your funeral director.

On this page we give you information about:

1. Cremation forms
2. Burial forms
3. Forms for funerals at home for those who died abroad

Cremation forms

Cremations require far more paperwork than burials because if the death is later regarded as suspicious, the body cannot be examined for evidence.

The funeral director can usually deal with the paperwork, but if you are organising a funeral yourself, the crematorium will supply forms to apply for a cremation and to give you instructions about what happens to the ashes. 

The forms required for cremation are:

  • Certificate for burial or cremation, also known as the green form: you should already have this (see Registering a death). Fee: free.
  • Cremation 1: application for cremation of the body of a person who has died. Completed by the relative and given to the crematorium. The applicant must also complete a form instructing what to do with the ashes, which may be on the reverse of this form. The ashes can only be released to the applicant, unless they are authorised to be released to another person or company. Fee: free.
  • Cremation 4: to complete this form, a doctor must see the body, so if the death was at home and the doctor did not visit to verify death, they will arrange to visit the funeral director. Fee: £82.
  • Cremation 5: a second doctor who does not work with the first doctor must complete form 5, having spoken with the first doctor and someone else who was involved in the care of the deceased such as a nurse, care home manager or a member of the family. This doctor must also see the body. Most hospitals have a panel of doctors available for this duty, and a GP or a funeral director will ask a GP from a different practice to do this. Fee: £82.
  • Cremation 6: the certificate issued by the coroner and needed when there has been a coroner's post-mortem, whether there is to be an inquest or not. This replaces the green form from the Registrar. Fee: free.
  • Cremation 10: authorisation of cremation of deceased person by medical referee. This is issued by the doctor who works at the crematorium. It confirms the cause of death has been agreed, or a coroner has opened an inquest.

The crematorium may have its own form for instructions on what to do with the ashes. 

Send the forms to the crematorium at least 24 hours before the service so the cremation can be authorised. Your funeral director can arrange this.

After the cremation, a certificate of cremation will be provided with the ashes. This is a legal document with the name of the deceased and date and place of the cremation.

The official forms are also available from this page on the GOV.UK website.

Cremation in Scotland and Northern Ireland

In Scotland and Northern Ireland, the application for cremation is called form A. The medical certificates are certificates B and C.

In addition, if a post-mortem examination has been ordered instead of the B and C certificates, an E form is issued by the procurator fiscal (Scotland) or coroner (Northern Ireland).

Form F is issued by the medical referee at the crematorium.

Burial forms

The forms required for burial are:

  • Certificate for burial or cremation, also known as the green form: you should already have this (see Registering a death). Fee: free.
  • Order for burial (form 101):  if the coroner is to hold an inquest this form is issued in place of the green form. It is usually collected by the funeral director.
  • Application form to purchase a new grave or to re-open an existing plot: the cemetery authority will issue a copy of the entry in the burial register as evidence of the burial and it describes the location of the grave. If exclusive rights of burial have been purchased, there will also be deeds to the grave issued. In a churchyard, these are replaced by a faculty issued by the diocese.

Deeds to the grave or a faculty paperwork

If you have acquired a set of deeds to the grave or a faculty, store the paperwork in a safe place as it will be needed in the future if there is a further burial in that grave. A grant of probate or statutory declaration will be needed to transfer the deeds or faculty if the person named as the deeds holder then dies. A statutory declaration is a statement sworn in front of a commissioner for oaths – usually a local solicitor.

Forms for funerals at home for those who died abroad

All bodies brought into the country from overseas have to be notified to the coroner in the district in which the body will be buried or cremated.

If the death is from natural causes and a burial is planned, the coroner permits the registrar of deaths to issue a certificate of no liability to register, which replaces the green certificate in this situation.

If the funeral is to be a cremation, the coroner issues a cremation form 6 authorising this, regardless of whether he or she has ordered a further investigation of the death or not.

For more information, see this page on the GOV.UK website.

More information

Page first published: 31 December 2015
Next review due: 31 May 2017