Find out which documents and information you might find useful to bring to the registry office with our checklist.
Useful documents and information when registering a death
The only document that is legally required to register a death is the medical certificate of the cause of death or the coroner’s form, but it can also be helpful to bring some more information about the deceased to the registry office. Here is a checklist of the most important documents and information:
- birth certificate
- NHS medical card or National Insurance number and a surviving spouse or civil partner
- proof of their address, such as a utility bill
- driving licence
- Blue Badge
- marriage or civil partnership certificate
- death certificate for the spouse or civil partner if the deceased was already widowed.
Additional information when registering a death
In addition to the information above, you may also want to note down the following information about the deceased to make registering the death easier, but you will need the permission of any people whose details you give to the registrar:
- full name
- maiden name and any other previous surnames (other surnames are not absolutely essential but this will be helpful if, for example, an old insurance policy is discovered that was taken out during an earlier marriage). You can also record any other names by which the person was known.
- date and place of birth (town and county in the UK or, if overseas, this is the country of birth as it exists today)
- date and place of death
- occupation or former occupation
- last usual address
- date of birth, name and occupation of a surviving spouse or civil partner (name and occupation only if spouse or civil partner has already died)
- next of kin
- whether the deceased received a state pension or other pension or benefits from public funds, such as a local authority retirement pension or Department for Work and Pension benefits
- National Insurance number
- name of the person dealing with their estate.
- Obtaining a medical certificate of cause of death: after someone’s died, a doctor has to issue a medical certificate of cause of death before you can register the death.
- Preparing to register a death: we take you through how and when to register the death of someone close to you, so you’ll be able to confirm funeral arrangements and administer the estate.
- The process of registering a death: the meeting to register a death takes around 30 minutes, during which you'll receive the death certificate and other useful information.
Page first published: December 2015
Next review due: October 2017