Registering a death
We hope this information will help you with the legal procedures at this time of loss. Please take a few minutes to read this before you go to the Register Office. It will help you to take the information and documents you need.
Before you register the death, you must have a ‘Medical Certificate Cause of Death’ from the doctor or hospital, or have been contacted by the Coroner's office to confirm that you can now register the death. More information about the Coroner
By law you must register the death within 5 days unless the Coroner is investigating. Registering a death is free, it will take around 40 minutes and needs to be registered in the district where it occurred. Here in Buckinghamshire you may register at any of our registration offices.
- Buckinghamshire Register Office (Aylesbury) – 01296 382581 (appointments are also available at the Buckingham Centre on alternate Thursdays)
- Beaconsfield – 01494 475200 (appointments also available at High Wycombe Library Registration Office on Tuesdays and Thursdays and at Amersham on Thursdays)
Registration is by appointment only.
If the death happened in hospital then the hospital bereavement officer will help you to make an appointment.
Who can register the death
You can register the death if:
- You are related to the person who has died
- You were with the person when they died
- You live at the place the person died and there is no known relative to register
- You are instructing the funeral director
You may bring a friend or relative with you when you see the registrar.
The registrar will see you in private and will ask questions about the person who has died. You will be asked to check the information given and to sign that it is correct.
You will be asked for the following information:
- Date and place of death
- Full name of the person who has died, and any other names used
- Their name before they were married, if this was different, and another other names used
- Their date and place of birth
- Their occupation and, if they were married, widowed or had formed a civil partnership, the full name and occupation of their spouse or civil partner
- Their usual address and postcode
- Date of birth of the surviving spouse or civil partner (if applicable)
- National Health Service medical card, if you have this
- Whether they are in receipt of a pension paid from Government funds (i.e. NHS, Civil Service)
The person registering will also be asked their relationship to the deceased and their name and address.
In some cases, the Registrar may have to refer the death to the Coroner. In this case, the registration will have to be delayed until the Coroner has confirmed the cause of death.
The registrar will give you a green form required by the funeral director, and a white form for the Department of Works and Pensions. You will also be offered death certificates to purchase.
The registrar may be able to advise how many copies of the certificate you will need.Information on costs and fees
Please note that we are unable to accept card payments in our Buckingham, Amersham and High Wycombe Library offices.
You may need copies of the death certificate for:
- Dealing with the Will
- Bank and building society accounts
- Insurance companies
- Tax rebates
- Stocks, shares and premium bonds
- A solicitor
- Company Pensions
Registering a death by declaration
If it is difficult for you to visit one of our offices you can go to any register office in England and Wales to give the details. These details will then be forwarded to our office and we will register the death. The document needed by the funeral director, a form for the Department of Works and Pensions and any death certificates you require, will be sent to you by post.
If the death has been referred to the Coroner, the Coroner’s Officer will advise you what to do. More information about the Coroner
If you need emergency help outside normal office hours, for example if a burial has to be carried out within 24 hours for religious reasons, you need to contact Thames Valley Police by calling 0845 850 5505 or visiting the police station in either Aylesbury or High Wycombe.
Tell Us Once
When someone dies, it can be a stressful and upsetting time. Details of the death need to be passed on to a number of different organisations, such as council housing departments, adult services, passport services and driving agencies.
Tell Us Once is a service we are offering to help with this process. When a death is registered, the registrar will take the relevant information and pass it on to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). The DWP will then pass that information on to the people who need to know. More information about Tell Us Once
For more information call 0845 3708090 or email email@example.com