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Register a death

To register a death, you need to book an appointment to go to a civil registration service. 

You can book an appointment online or by phone. Walk-ins are available in some offices at certain times.

It’s free to register a death.

To avoid delays, bring all the documents you need to your appointment. Without them, we will not be able to register the death.

Who can register a death

Any family member or relative can register a death.

If a family member or relative cannot register the death

A ‘qualified informant’ can also register a death.

This includes:

  • a person who was there at the time of death
  • anyone with the deceased person’s details - their PPS number, place of birth, parents' names, job, civil status
  • a chief officer or authorised person in a hospital, institution or organisation
  • a person who found or took charge of the body
  • any other person who has knowledge of the death

When to register a death

By law, you must register the death within 12 months. If you need to register a death after 12 months, phone the civil registration service for advice.

Documents to bring to your appointment

Photo ID

Bring the original of any of the following forms of photo ID:

  • passport
  • driver's licence
  • refugee asylum card
  • national ID card from a country where it is an accepted form of travel document
  • public services card

The ID is for the person who is registering the death, not the person who died.

Death notification form

If a person dies in a hospital or nursing home, the hospital or doctor will give the form to the next-of-kin or another relative.

The GP or doctor will have completed Part 1 of the form. You must then complete Part 2 of the form before you attend the appointment.

If someone dies outside of these places, the death is sometimes referred to the coroner.

Deaths referred to a coroner

A coroner is responsible for investigating sudden, violent or unexplained deaths. They find out if a death is due to natural or unnatural causes.

If a death is referred to the coroner, there may be a delay in registering their death. The coroner will tell you how long this might take.

They may give you an interim death certificate. This can be used to close bank and credit union accounts or to cancel social welfare or pension payments.

If there is an inquest or post-mortem, the coroner will send the civil registration service a certificate. We will then register the death. You do not need to do anything else.

Read more about coroners on

Page last reviewed: 13 February 2023
Next review due: 13 February 2026