Registering A Death

Who Should Register The Death And When?

Searsons Portsmouth Funeral Directors Death Certificate

Registrar of births, marriages and deaths

Who should register a death and when should this be done? I've just lost someone, and now I need to know what to do.

Who Should Register The Death And When?

Once the ‘Medical Certificate of Cause of Death’ has been issued, this should be taken to the Registrar of Births and Deaths. This will enable the registration to take place which, by law, must be done within five days of the death. The ‘Medical Certificate of Cause of Death’ will more often be issued by the GP who attended the deceased during their illness.

The certificate will be collected from the surgery if the deceased passed away at home and you should call the surgery to arrange this. However, if the death occurred in hospital then the Patients Affairs Office should be contacted to arrange collection from them. There is no charge payable for this certificate.

Generally speaking the person who should register a death can be any one of the following:

A relative present at the Death

A relative in attendance during the last illness

A relative residing in the sub-district where death occurred

If the death has been reported to the Coroner, then registration cannot take place until we, or the Coroner, informs you. There may be a different procedure to registration if a Coroner is involved, and we’ll guide you on these variations should they arise. The Coroner’s procedures can often seem complicated and difficult to understand.

Registering A Death

Register a deathDifficult as this may sound, you will need to register the death of a loved one. If they have died in hospital, then usually you will receive the information to direct you to the person that will help you with this. If you are not sure contact us, and one of our family will help you.


Registrar Offices and More Information

Record Office,
3 Orchard Street, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1DD
Telephone Number: 01243 642122
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4 Osborn Road South,
Fareham, PO16 7DG
Telephone Number: 01329 280493
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High Street,
Gosport, PO12 1BT
Telephone Number: 0845 603 5637
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Civic Centre Road,
Havant, PO9 2AX
Telephone Number: 0845 603 5637
Map & Directions
The Old College,
College Street, Petersfield, GU31 4AG
Telephone Number: 01730 265372
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Milldam House,
Burnaby Road, Portsmouth, PO1 3AF
Telephone Number: 023 9275 6597
Opening Hours: 9am to 4.30pm weekdays only
Map & Directions

What documents do you need to have

When you go to register the death, you will need to take the medical certificate showing the cause of death (signed by a doctor) with you. If available (but don't worry if you have not got these documents) also take the persons:

Birth Certificate

Council Tax Bill

Driving Licence

Marriage or civil partnership certificate

NHS Medical Card


Proof of address (example Utility Bill)

You will need to tell the registrar

The registrar will ask you some questions about the person who has died. These questions will include:

The persons FULL NAME at the time of death

Any names previously used (example Maiden Name)

The persons date and place of birth

The persons last address

Their occupation

The full name, date of birth and occupation of a surviving or late spouse/partner

Whether they were getting a State Pension or any other benefits

You should also take any supporting documents that show YOUR name and address (example a Utility Bill), but you can still register a death without these documents.

When you have registered a death

After you have registered the persons death, you will be given -
a Certificate for Burial or Cremation (also known as the "green form"). This grants you permission for a burial or an application to have your loved one cremated;
a Certificate of Registration of Death (form BD8). You may need to fill this out and return it if the person was getting a State Pension or benefits (the form will come with a pre-paid envelope so you know where to send it);
a Death Certificate itself. You can buy extra death certificates - these will be needed for sorting out the person’s affairs.

About Us

Searsons Family Funeral Services take great pride in offering a service which focuses very much on family values. Look at any other funeral business for miles around and see how many of one family work in the business!

You can read more about us, and should you require further information, help and advice about a recent bereavement, then please contact us for free and impartial advice.

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Searson Funeral Services

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319 Copnor Road, Portsmouth,
Mobile users call us on:
023 9266 5795
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105 Winter Road, Southsea,
Mobile users call us on:
023 9273 8922
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25-29 Park Parade, Leigh Park,
Mobile users call us on:
023 9247 7190

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