What To Do When A Person Dies

Registering a Death

All deaths are required by law to be registered in the sub-district where they occur.  The doctor who certified the death will issue a Medical Cause of Death Certificate, which must be taken to the District/Sub-District Registrar by the next of kin or a nominated representative along with the deceased’s medical card.


Registering must be done within 5 days of the death, this may vary if the Coroner is involved.  The Registrar must be contacted before attending to make an appointment. 

The Registration Office for Chichester is located at:

3 Orchard Street

Chichester PO19 1DD



·        Relative or civil partner of the deceased

·        The person responsible for paying the funeral account

·        An executor of the Will of the deceased

·        The Matron/Governor of an institution where the deceased resided or died

The procedure at the Register Office is very straightforward, the person attending will be asked for the following:

·        Date and place of birth and death of the deceased (Birth Certificate)

·        Full name of the deceased

·        Marital status of the deceased

·        The last occupation of the deceased

·        If the deceased was female, her maiden name

·        If the deceased was married at the time of death, the date of birth of the surviving partner

·        Registrar’s certificate for burial or cremation (a green form) which will be required by the Burial Authority or Crematorium (if a Funeral Director is to be used then this form should be handed to them).

·        Certified Copy of an Entry in the Register of Deaths.  Additional copies may be required by each bank or insurance company, a fee is payable for each additional copy.  There are a number of other people and/or organisation that will be contacted see People & Organisations to Notify page for further information.

·        Certificate of Registration (this certificate is needed in order to claim benefits or if the deceased was in receipt of benefits and/or a pension)


Registration Involving the Coroner

If the Coroner is involved in investigating the death, registration cannot take place until after initial investigations have been completed.  There are a number of different actions that the Coroner may take and each has a different procedure for registration.  The Coroner’s Officer will explain at the time what procedure is being followed and what actions, if any, need to be taken by the person who will be making funeral arrangements.

People And Organisations To Notify

Following a death, there are many individuals, organisations and companies that the person responsible for managing the deceased’s affairs may have to contact.  Listed below are some of those that may have to be contacted. Not all those listed will necessarily apply in all circumstances:

  • -        Funeral Director
  • -        Solicitor
  • -        Religious/Faith leader (Priest/Vicar etc)
  • -        Register of Births, Marriages & Ceremonies
  • -        GP
  • -        Coroner
  • -        Probate Office
  • -        Deceased’s employers
  • -        Bank
  • -        Insurance Companies
  • -        Building Society
  • -        Accountant
  • -        Inland Revenue (HMRC)
  • -        Post Office Savings
  • -        Shares/Investment
  • -        Department for Work & Pensions (DWP)(form BD8 certificate required from Registrar)
  • -        Return Pension and Benefit Books
  • -        Private Pension Providers
  • -        Hospital/day centres (cancel appointments)
  • -        Dentist/Opticians (cancel appointments)
  • -        Return medical appliances/wheelchairs etc on loan
  • -        Return/Cancel rented equipment
  • -        Passport (cancel)
  • -        Car Insurance (cancel)
  • -        Driving Licence/change ownership on car registration document
  • -        SORN vehicle if required
  • -        Subscriptions (clubs, organisations, magazines, broadband, TV)
  • -        Police (security of empty property)
  • -        Council/housing association/private landlord if rented accommodation
  • -        Estate Agents for valuation or sale of property
  • -        House clearance agent/auctioneers
  • -        Utilities – water, gas, electric, telephone etc
  • -        Milkman, Newsagents etc
  • -        Meals on Wheels/Home Help
  • -        Benefits Office
  • -        Council Tax