How To Request A Death Certificate In The UK ? (Full Process with Fee)
Death brings with it pain and sorrow and a lot of paperwork too! The death certificate is the most important and useful out of the numerous paperwork you receive after death. The death certificate can be useful in arranging a funeral, closing old accounts, getting the estate settled, and notifying businesses. You can get a death certificate by visiting the registered office. Read this article to find out more about procuring a death certificate.
Basic Things to Know About Death Certificates
After you register a death in the United Kingdom, you will receive a death certificate. The death certificate is a legal document that contains a copy of the crucial details recorded on the death register. You need to obtain a death certificate to arrange a funeral or sort out the deceased’s estate.
You must register a death within five days for certain areas like Northern Ireland, Wales, and England. However, in Scotland, you get eight days to register a death.
Where to get a Death Certificate in The UK?
People usually visit their local register office to obtain a death certificate. It is advisable to visit the closest register office to the person’s place of death to avoid unnecessary delays in obtaining a death certificate if you live in Wales or England. However, in Northern Ireland or Scotland, there are no such restrictions. You can visit any council or district register office to obtain a death certificate if you stay in Northern Ireland or Scotland.
It would be best if you called ahead to the registered office to book an appointment since register offices are usually quite crowded and busy. You might not get a chance to apply for a death certificate immediately when you arrive at a registered office if you haven’t gotten an appointment. If you already have an appointment, your trip to the registered office should take around 30 minutes only.
Full Process Of Getting A Death Certificate In The UK
You must have the medical certificate of the deceased person before you apply for a death certificate. The medical certificate is issued by a general physician or other doctors in the hospital. The medical certificate must have some information about the cause of death.
While visiting the registered office for a death certificate, it is advisable to carry any form of identification such as a passport or a driving license with you. This will help the people at the registered office understand who you are and how you are related to the dead person.
You can also bring the following documents of the dead person with you.
- NHS medical card
- If they have a pension or government allowance, you need to bring documents proving such.
- Civil partnership or a marriage certificate
- Driving license
- Utility bill or a bank statement that proves their address.
The documents mentioned above aren’t needed for registering the death at the registered office. However, the information stated in these documents can help you have all the necessary information asked by the people at the registered office about the dead person. They generally take details such as:
- Their name at birth and after marriage
- Full name during death
- The place of birth
- The date of birth
- The full name of their partner or their civil partner.
- Their job position or the last job they had before their death.
- Their last address before their death
- Important information about any pension or government benefits they received at their death.
Importance of a death certificate in The UK
If you want to cremate the dead person or hold a funeral for them, you need to produce the death certificate. If you hire a funeral director to arrange the funeral, they ask for a death certificate before starting the process. You need to have the death certificate to handle the property and the deceased’s bank accounts. Various financial organizations require you to send them a copy of the death certificate if you are responsible for executing the deceased’s will or the appointed administrator of their estate. Mostly the financial organizations that ask for a death certificate are the banks, insurance companies, and pension providers.
Most financial institutions prefer to get an official copy of the death certificate rather than a Xerox copy. Most of the institutions that ask for the official copy of the death certificate return it in a few days. However, if you want to send the death certificate to multiple institutions and quickly get done with the process, you can order multiple copies of the official certificate.
Who can apply for a death certificate in The UK?
In the United Kingdom, most deaths are registered by the relatives of the deceased. However, if the deceased had no relatives to obtain a death certificate, the following people can also apply for their death certificate.
- If someone dies in the hospital and doesn’t have any relatives, the administrator at the hospital can apply for a death certificate.
- If someone wants to arrange a funeral for the deceased person, they can apply for a death certificate.
- Someone present during the person’s death can apply for their death certificate.
Length and cost of obtaining a Death Certificate In the UK
It takes around 30 minutes to get a death certificate from the registered office. However, it takes a few days to get an appointment at the registered office. After your appointment, you can get the death certificate immediately. It is crucial to get in touch with the registered office as soon as possible since you need to get the death certificate within a certain period.
It is completely free to register a death at the registered office. However, you need to pay £11 for every copy of the death certificate in Wales and England. In Northern Ireland, each copy of the death certificate costs about £8, and in Scotland, they cost about £10 each. If you apply for a death certificate after the stipulated time, you will need to pay extra. The price of a death certificate is raised to around £15 in Northern Ireland and around £12 in Scotland.
A death certificate is an important document you need to obtain after someone’s death. It is a relatively easy process. You need to understand the costs, time, and process of obtaining a death certificate before you apply for it. Check out all the sections in this article to easily understand how to get a death certificate.