Register a death

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update:

Register Office: The Register Office is closed to members of the public until further notice.

Ceremonies: Following guidance from the government on 23 March 2020, all ceremonies are currently suspended.

The Government has recently published its COVID-19 recovery strategy, which includes examining how we might facilitate small weddings from 1 June at the earliest, and provided that appropriate conditions are met. However, please note that the Government has been clear that nothing has been decided, and ceremonies still remain suspended. We have no further details regarding exactly when ceremonies will resume and in what form. We do appreciate this period of uncertainty is challenging for couples, and as soon as more information is available it will be published on our website.

If you wish to reschedule an existing ceremony we are waiving the fee for this, and will hold fees for future bookings if you do not yet know a new date.

Birth registrations: No birth registration appointments will be made until further notice. If you already have an appointment booked we will contact you to cancel this. You will still be able to make a claim for child benefit or universal credit and we are awaiting further information on how this will work.

Death registrations: Registrations will take place over the telephone. You must not come to the Register Office. Please ensure the contact number you give us when making your appointment is correct as this is the number the registrar will phone you on to complete the registration. During the call, the registrar will explain the process for the paperwork.

Notice of marriage/civil partnership appointments: No appointments until further notice. 

Citizenship Ceremonies: Following guidance from the government on 23 March 2020, all ceremonies have been cancelled until further notice.

Certificate applications: No orders are being taken for certificates and the priority service is suspended.

EUSS service: This service is not currently being offered.

Updated: 18 May 2020

How to register a death

By law, a death must be registered within 5 days, unless a registrar agrees to extend this period, or if a coroner is involved. A death must also be registered in the district in which the death occurred. You can see the Peterborough registration district by referring to this map:

Maps-PboroUnitaryAuthority
Peterborough Unitary Authority area map
Size: 765KBFile format: pdf

Please note: Yaxley and Whittlesey are not in the Peterborough district and so for deaths that occurred in these towns you will need to contact Cambridgeshire Register Office. If you do come to the Peterborough Register Office then you will either be turned away or you will be able to make a declaration for the death registration.

This means we will take the information from you and send the declaration to the relevant registration district who will issue the paperwork. As you do not receive any death certificates at a declaration appointment this could cause a delay to the funeral arrangements.

The benefit of a declaration is for when you are unable to travel to the correct register office. However the convenience of less travel has to weighed against the delay in receiving the death certificates/the green form and the potential delay to the funeral arrangements.

After a death, a doctor will issue a medical certificate showing the cause of death. The sealed envelope containing the medical certificate will usually be given to the next of kin, which must then be given to the registrar so the death can be registered.

At the time of your appointment, the registrar will telephone you to carry out the registration.

Please make sure that the telephone number you enter when making the booking is correct, and that at the time of your appointment your phone is charged and to hand. Please note that our call may show as a withheld number. The appointment will take 30 to 45 minutes.

The medical certificate showing the cause of death that the doctor would usually give to you to take to the Register Office will instead be sent directly to us by email. The doctor will keep the original. If the doctor has given you the original medical certificate in error, please return it to them as soon as possible.

Please do not book a registration appointment until the doctor has told you that they have emailed the medical certificate to us.

If we have not received it prior to your appointment, we will not be able to register, and will need to reschedule.

To register a death please contact the Register Office on 01733 864646 or book an appointment online.

Please note: due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, all death registrations will be completed over the telephone - you must not come to the Register Office.

Who can register a death

It is usual for a relative to register a death but if there are no relatives it is possible for someone else to register, such as:

  • a person present at the death
  • the person responsible for arranging and paying for the funeral.

How it works

Your private appointment will generally last for 45 minutes. It is useful to bring the deceased's birth certificate, marriage certificate (if applicable) and NHS medical card.

The registrar will ask for:

  • date and place of death
  • full name of the deceased, including maiden name where appropriate
  • the deceased's date and place of birth
  • the deceased's occupation, where appropriate
  • if the deceased was married/widowed, the full names and occupation of the spouse
  • the deceased's usual address
  • the date of birth of the spouse, if the deceased was married
  • if the deceased had been receiving any pensions from public funds.

You will be given the opportunity to check that the information is correct and you will be asked to sign the register to state that you agree with the information as recorded. Once signed, the register entry becomes a legal document and therefore it is an offence to give false information. 

Any mistakes noticed after you have signed the register will require a lengthy correction process which may delay the corrected certificate being issued. See the paragraph below for how to correct a registration and the fees that will be charged.

Certificates

At your appointment, two forms will be issued:

  • certificate for burial or cremation, sometimes called the green form. This is the certificate to take to the funeral director so that arrangements can be made for the funeral to take place
  • certificate of registration of death, sometimes called form BD8, for Department of Work and Pensions purposes.

You will be able to purchase certified copies of the death certificate at £11 per certificate. These are needed for the following:

  • probate or letters of administration
  • bank and building society accounts
  • life insurance policies covering the deceased
  • dealing with stocks and shares owned by the deceased
  • applying for a tax rebate

After the registration, should you find that you need more certificates you will be able to order them at the same fee of £11 each. If you need a certificate urgently, we offer a priority service. You can find out more information on our certificates page.

Peterborough coroner

You can find out more about when a death is reported to a coroner from GOV.UK. If you need to contact the coroner's office for Cambridgeshire & Peterborough you can use the following details:

Senior Coroner's Office (Cambridgeshire & Peterborough)
Lawrence Court
Princes Street
Huntingdon
PE29 3PA

Telephone: 0345 045 1364
Email: coroners@cambridgeshire.gov.uk

Tell Us Once service

When someone has died there are lots of things that need to be done at a time when you least feel like doing them. At your appointment to register the death, the registrar will offer you the Tell Us Once service which helps you notify government departments and local council services of the death. This is a free service.

To make sure the right information is given to the people we contact for you, please bring:

  • details of any benefits or services they were receiving
  • their passport, driving licence, vehicle log book (DVLA form V5C) and, if applicable, blue badge.

The national insurance number of the deceased and their spouse would be useful but is not essential.

The organisations that can be contacted for you include, the Department of Work and Pensions, HM Revenue & Customs, Identity & Passport Service and the DVLA and Local Authority services such as Council TaxAdult Social Care and Housing Benefit.

Corrections

After the death has been registered, if you need to make any corrections please contact us. The process for correction is lengthy and may need to be authorised by the Registrar General which will add to the delay in the corrected certificate being issued. You may also be required to make a statutory declaration.

There are fees payable for the consideration of the correction and for any corrected certificates requested. The following national fees apply:

  • Corrections which we are able to authorise locally: £75.00
  • Corrections which we need to refer to the Registrar General: £90.00

In addition, you will also need to pay again for any certificates you require with the corrected information and, if it is required by the Registrar General, you may also need to pay for a statutory declaration.

For more information, please visit the GOV.UK website.