Register a death

Registration should take place within 5 days of the date of death.

A death must be registered in the district where it occurs. However, if a death occurs outside Calderdale a declaration can be made here and forwarded to the Registrar of that district, who will then issue any paperwork.

Please note: we rely on the postal service to send declaration information to other districts, which can lead to a delay in certificates and other paperwork being issued.

On days when the Register Office is closed, it is possible to make a death registration between 10.00am and 6.00pm, in certain extreme circumstances. A Community Registrar can be contacted by telephone between these hours on 07940 541583. You should ensure that you have all the relevant paperwork before telephoning.  Relatives wishing to take a person out of the country will need to contact the Register Office on the next working day.

Book an appointment

To register a death Book an appointment with the Register Office

Who can register a death?

A death can be registered by:

  • A relative of the person who has died;
  • Any person who was present at the death;
  • The occupier of the place where the death took place, if he or she was aware that the death had taken place;
  • Any person arranging the funeral not including the funeral director.

The majority of deaths are registered by a relative of the deceased. The registrar would normally allow one of the other listed persons to register the death only if there were no relatives available.

The Registrar will ask you questions relating to the deceased. The information you give will be entered in the register. You will need to know the

  • date and place of death;
  • name and surname of the deceased;
  • maiden surname, if the deceased was a woman who had married;
  • date and place of birth;
  • occupation;
  • name and occupation of spouse or civil partner if applicable;
  • usual address;
  • whether the deceased was in receipt of a pension or allowance from public funds;
  • the date of birth of the surviving spouse or civil partner if applicable.

The deceased's medical card, if available, should also be given to the registrar.

It is most important that the information recorded in the death register is correct. If any mistake is made, for example in the spelling of a name or surname or in the description of the occupation, it will give the relative or other person who registered the death some trouble to have it put right. The person registering the death should check the information in the register very carefully before the entry is signed.

Tell us once

This is a service offered by the Department for Work and Pensions whereby they will contact government and local council services on your behalf following a death registration. You will be issued with a reference number at your appointment to enable you to access this service from home, either online or via the telephone, see Tell us once .

If you require any further information, contact the Register Office .

What paperwork will be issued?

Once the registration is complete you will receive free of charge the following two forms:

  1. A Certificate of Burial / Cremation - This is a green form and must be handed to the Funeral Director.
  2. A Registration or Notification of Death Form - This is a white form. It is issued purely for the purpose of notifying the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) of the death. The informant completes the back of the form and sends it to the DWP with any pension or allowance books belonging to the deceased.

Death certificates

If you require any death certificates (for banks, insurance companies, etc), you can buy them at the time of registration. Certificates bought at a later date will incur a higher fee.

A small number of deaths have to be reported to the coroner before they can be registered and before the document allowing the funeral to go ahead can be issued. The following are the deaths that, if not already reported to the coroner by someone else, will be reported by the registrar:

  • where there is no doctor who can issue a medical certificate of cause of death, or
  • where the deceased was not seen by the doctor issuing the medical certificate after death nor within 14 days before death, or
  • where the cause of death is unknown, or
  • where the cause of death is believed to be unnatural or suspicious, or
  • where the death occurred during an operation or before recovery from an anaesthetic, or
  • where the death is due to industrial disease or industrial poisoning.

Once a death has been reported to the coroner, the registrar cannot go ahead with the registration until the coroner has decided whether any further investigation into the death is necessary, and issued any relevant paperwork. In the vast majority of cases no further investigation is necessary.