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How to register a death

We recommend that no funeral date is set until an appointment has been made with us.

If the death occurred in Bournemouth, Christchurch or Poole and the coroner was not involved, the doctor or hospital will send us the medical certificate of the cause of death together with your details and we will contact you as soon as we have received these so that we can book an appointment for you to register the death. You can choose to go to any of the 3 offices.

In some circumstances, the hospital will book an appointment for you. If you have not heard from us within 5 days of the death, please email us as below with the details of the deceased and your contact details and we will call you as soon as we have received the certificate from the doctor.

Deaths referred to the coroner

If the doctor has referred the death to the coroner, we are unable to register the death until the coroner has issued the relevant paperwork. Please wait until a coroner's officer contacts you to discuss the death. They will then contact us with your details so that we can call you to book an appointment if this is needed.

Who can register the death

A relative should register the death.

If a relative is unable to register the death, you can if you:

  • were there at the time of death
  • are a senior administrator from the hospital (if the person died in hospital)
  • are the manager of a care home where the person died
  • are the occupier of the building where the person died
  • are in charge of making funeral arrangements.

Documents needed

To ensure we have the correct information for your appointment, we recommend you bring the deceased’s:

  • passport
  • birth certificate
  • proof of address (for example a utility bill)
  • medical card or NHS number
  • marriage or civil partnership certificate (if applicable)
  • driving licence
  • blue badge
  • National Insurance Number.

You will need to tell the registrar:

  • the person's full name at the time of death
  • any names previously used, for example maiden name
  • the person's date and place of birth
  • their last address
  • their occupation
  • the full name, date of birth and occupation of a surviving or late spouse or civil partner
  • whether they were getting a State Pension or any other benefits.

Tell Us Once service

Through the Tell Us Once service we can help you to report the death to both government and local council departments.

At your appointment we will either give you a unique reference number which you can use to notify different departments, or we will do the whole of the process for you.

You'll need the following details of the person who died:

  • date of birth
  • National Insurance number
  • driving licence number
  • vehicle registration number
  • passport number
  • death certificate

We may also need to know about:

  • any benefits or entitlements they were getting, for example State Pension
  • their next of kin
  • any surviving husband, wife or civil partner and their date of birth
  • the person or company dealing with their estate (property, belongings and money), known as their 'executor' or 'administrator'
  • any public sector or armed forces pension schemes they were getting or paying in to

You will need permission from the next of kin, the executor, the administrator or anyone who was claiming joint benefits or entitlements with the person who died, before you give their details.

Documents you will get

The Certificate of Burial or Cremation (green form) will be sent directly to the funeral directors.

Death certificates cost £11 each and can be paid for by card payment during your appointment, you will be able to take them away with you.

Alternatively, you can order them online.

If the death occurred outside of the BCP Council area

Please contact the registration service in the area where the death occurred.

Contact information

Please use this email address for Bournemouth and Christchurch deaths:

01202 123 777

Please use this email address for Poole deaths:

01202 123 232

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