Registering a death

1. Registering a death

This page will help you with the legal procedures at this time of loss.

You must register a death within 5 days unless the Coroner is investigating. Registering a death is free and must be registered in the district where it occurred.

You need to book an appointment to register a death. Please read the following information then you can book an appointment online by using the green button below.


Who can register the death?

  • A relative eg husband/wife or civil partner, brother or sister
  • A person who was present at the death
  • The occupier of the premises where the death occurred if he/she knew about it
  • The person arranging the funeral (this does not include the funeral director)


If the death took place within Buckinghamshire

You can register at any of our registration offices. We will issue certificates and can provide further copy certificates at a later date.


If the death took place outside Buckinghamshire

You can register a death which took place outside Buckinghamshire by making a 'declaration’ at any register office. This means that we will take all your details, plus your payment, and send them to the relevant register office. Payment is posted so must be a cheque or postal order. Your certificates will be sent to you by post. This could take up to 10 days and may delay the funeral arrangements. If you make a declaration the death will not be registered at the office you attend and, we will not hold any records or be able to provide any copies of death certificates, either at the time of the declaration or in the future.

If you do decide to register a death in this way, please call us on 01296 383005. This is so that we can obtain any paperwork necessary, for instance, a medical certificate or information issued by the Coroner.



If the doctor has referred the death to the Coroner the Registrar will need written authorisation from the Coroner that no further investigations are necessary and the death can be registered. You will only be able to register the death once this paperwork has been received by the Registrar. Please tell us if the Coroner has been involved when you make your appointment.

More information about the Coroner


Your appointment

Please bring:

  • The Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (MCCD) issued by the doctor (if the doctor has advised a post-mortem will be held, the paperwork needed to register the death will be issued by the Coroner directly to the Register Office).  Please note that you must have the MCCD from the doctor before booking your appointment
  • The deceased's medical card showing their NHS number, if available
  • To help ensure accuracy and correct spellings please bring supporting documents for the deceased eg UK passport, National Insurance number, driving licence, utility bill, birth and marriage certificates and your passport, photo driving licence, proof of address eg utility bill. We can still register the death without these documents
  • Payment for any death certificates required - current fees

We will need to know:

  • The deceased’s full name and surname (and any other names used)
  • Maiden surname for women
  • Date and place of death
  • Date and place of birth
  • Occupation and usual address
  • The name, occupation, and date of birth of the deceased’s spouse or civil partner, if the deceased was married or in a civil partnership or widowed

We will provide:

  • A green form which must be given to the funeral director to arrange the funeral (where a post-mortem is held and the deceased is to be cremated, the Coroner will issue this form)
  • A form BD8 for you to send to the Department of Social Security
  • Death certificates
  • Tell us once reference number (see below)

In some cases, we may have to refer the death to the Coroner. In this case, registration will have to be delayed until the Coroner has confirmed the cause of death.

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
  • Probate
  • Company pensions

If you do not speak or understand English, please bring someone who can translate for you.

Book your appointment



If you need emergency help outside normal office hours eg if a burial has to be carried out within 24 hours for religious reasons contact Thames Valley Police on 101 or visit 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 to different central and local government departments eg council housing, care services, passport services and driving agencies. Tell us once is a free service which can help with this.

More information about Tell Us Once

2. Tell Us Once

This service makes things a little easier when you are coping with a death.

The Tell Us Once team will notify all participating government departments and organisations of the death. This includes council housing, adult services, income support, libraries, driver and vehicle licensing agencies and passport services. This will save you numerous calls and letters to each individual department.


How does it work?

When you register the death we will register you onto the free Tell Us Once Service. We will give you a letter with a reference number and instructions on how to use the service. It is not essential to do this straight away, but it's advisable to do this within a week of making the registration.

You'll need to gather some documents and information then go online or call 0800 085 7308.

Report a death

  • You'll need to answer questions relating to the organisations the deceased had contact with.
  • Tell Us Once will then notify those departments and they will amend their records. 


What you will need

The information you'll need when you go online or call:

  • Tell Us Once reference number
  • Death certificate information
  • Deceased's National Insurance Number
  • Deceased's surviving husband, wife or civil partners’ National Insurance Number or date of birth
  • Next of kin's name. Address and telephone number
  • Information about any benefits and services the deceased may have been receiving (e.g. state pension, income support, housing benefit, library card etc)
  • Name and address of the person dealing with the deceased's estate (if different to next of kin)
  • Driving Licence (if held), or Driver Number if licence not available
  • Passport (if held) or passport number if passport not available


Participating organisations

Local Councils

(If the deceased lived in Buckinghamshire or in a participating council area)

  • Housing Benefit Office
  • Council Tax Payments and Benefits Office
  • Council Housing
  • Libraries
  • Blue Badge
  • Adult Social Care
  • Children's Services
  • Collection of payments for Council Services e.g. assisted bin collection
  • Passport Cancellation

Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency

  • Driving License Cancellation

Department for Work and Pensions

  • Pension, Disability and Carers Services
  • Jobcentre Plus
  • Overseas Health Team

Ministry of Defence, Service Personnel and Veterans Agency

  • War Pensions Scheme

HM Revenue and Customs

  • Personal Taxation


Tell Us Once is a partnership between Buckinghamshire County Council, Aylesbury Vale District Council, Chiltern District Council, South Bucks District Council and Wycombe District Council. 

Further information on Tell Us Once can be found on the GOV.UK website.

Tell Us Once privacy statement


3. Corrections to Death Registrations

If you need to make a correction to a death registration, please contact us  for advice on what to do next.  We will let you know whether you need to use the link below and complete a correction application form, which should be then sent or dropped in to us with supporting documentation.


Correct a Death registration 

5. Registering a stillbirth

When a child is still-born, the doctor or midwife in attendance will issue a medical certificate of stillbirth.

You will need to make an appointment to register the stillbirth and you can do this by phoning either 01296 383005 for the Aylesbury office or 01494 475205 for the Beaconsfield office.

A stillbirth needs to be registered in the district in which it took place and within 42 days.

When you come to the Register Office, you will be treated with sensitivity and sympathy and staff will do their upmost to minimise distress.

Who can register a stillbirth?

  • the mother
  • the father, if he was married to the mother at the time of the stillbirth
  • a person present at the stillbirth

If the parents are not married, the mother and the father must attend the appointment if his name is to be included in the register.

What the Registrar will ask you

The Registrar will ask you for the medical certificate of stillbirth.

You will also be asked for:

  • the date and place of stillbirth
  • the name that you have chosen for your baby
  • the parents' full names
  • the date and place of birth, the occupation and the home address for each parent
  • date of marriage, if applicable

You will be given a certificate of registration and a form for the burial or cremation. A full certificate of stillbirth will also be offered to you for a small fee.

6. Bereavement Guide

Our Bereavement Guide gives advice and will help guide you through the legal formalities.

Decorative front cover of the Buckinghamshire Registration Service Bereavement Guide

You can view it online and use the printer icon to print any pages you need.

Email: registrars@buckscc.gov.uk