abdcare blog

IS THE COST OF OBTAINING A DEATH CERTIFICATE EXPENSIVE?

03.05.2019

• On the 16th of February 2019 the General Register Office (a Government agency which is part of HM Passport office and controlled by the Home Office) increased the cost of obtaining a Death Certificate by 175% from £4 to £11.

• This increase could be considered to be a stealth tax with its timing being unfortunate in a time of austerity. For the purpose of providing balance to this observation it is only right to say that it is the first increase since 2010 and the cost is set at cost recovery levels only. Registrars have the power to reduce or waive the cost on the grounds of hardship or compassion.

• What needs to be understood however is that people can require as many as 20 Death Certificates for the purposes of notifying others about closing accounts, arranging a funeral, notifying utilities and other organisations. This can increase the cost to £220.

• Useful information about obtaining a Death Certificate is as follows:-

a) A person has 5 days to register a death in England & Wales. If a Coroner is investigating a death you cannot obtain a certificate until the Coroner provides permission.
b) A death should be registered at the Registry office closest to where the deceased died. If this is not possible registration can take place at any other Registry.
c) To obtain a Death Certificate a medical certificate is required from the hospital where the person died or the GP who tended the person.
d) Information that you should take with you to obtain a certificate includes the persons full name, date of birth, NHS medical card or number, marriage or Civil Partnership certificate, Birth Certificate and proof of their address
e) When asked whether you want to register with “Tell us Once” you should say yes because this automatically notifies HMRC, DWP, DVLA, the local council and HM Passport office.

• When the death has been registered you will get a Green Certificate for burial or cremation purposes, plus the certificate and as many copies of the certificate you are prepared to pay for. Six copies represent a good minimum. You will also receive confirmation of registration with the “Tell us Once” service if you have chosen to register with them.

• Having obtained a certificate the next things you do include choosing a funeral Director, arrange the funeral and notify others for the purposes of winding up the dead person’s estate.

• The above is an overview only. For a free appointment and to find out answers to the questions that need answering and to get the care you or a loved one need email Andrew Douglas or his team on ajd@awdrys.co.uk or call on 0800 072 8636.

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