Last updated:
20 October 2017

Register a death

Book an appointment to register a death in West Sussex. You must do this within 5 days.

1 Book an appointment

If the death occurred in West Sussex, you can book an appointment to register at any of our Registration Offices.

Please note that the online booking system cannot be used on a mobile or tablet.

Book your appointment online (external link)

Alternatively you can phone: 01243 642122

You must have the medical cause of death certificate from the doctor before you can register a death. If the death is referred to the coroner they will issue the medical paperwork directly to the registrar. The coroner's officer will usually contact you when the paperwork has been completed so you can make an appointment to register the death.

At your appointment the registrar will give you details of the Tell Us Once service. This service lets you report a death to most government organisations in one go. 

2 Who can register a death

You can register the death if you’re:

  • a relative
  • someone present at the death
  • an administrator from the hospital
  • the person making arrangements with the funeral directors.
Book your appointment online (external link)

3 What you need to do

Take the medical certificate showing the cause of death (signed by a doctor) with you.

If available, also take the person’s:

  • birth certificate
  • Council Tax bill
  • driving licence
  • marriage or civil partnership certificate
  • NHS medical card
  • passport
  • proof of address (for example, a utility bill).

What you’ll need to tell the registrar

The details the registrar will need to know about the deceased are:

  • their full name at the time of death
  • any names previously used, for example, maiden name
  • their date and place of birth
  • their last address
  • their occupation
  • the full name, date of birth and occupation of any surviving or late spouse or civil partner
  • whether they were getting a State Pension or any other benefits.

You should also take supporting documents that show your name and address (such as a utility bill dated within the last three months), but you can still register a death without them.

Documents you’ll get when you register a death

  • Certificate for Burial or Cremation (the ‘green form’) - gives permission for burial or an application for cremation.
  • 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.

Find more information on GOV.UK.

Book your appointment online (external link)

4 Deaths outside of West Sussex (registration by declaration)

If the death occurred outside West Sussex you may still register the death, by declaration, at any of our registration offices.

We will take the required information and forward it to the correct registration district on your behalf. If you choose this option, please be aware you will not be issued with any documents immediately; they will be posted to you within a few days from the relevant registration district.

It is important to note that this could delay the funeral arrangements.

Book your appointment online (external link)

5 Tell Us Once

When someone has died, their death needs to be registered with the registrar. Once this is done other organisations and government departments need to be informed.

The Tell Us Once service makes this easier for you. You only need to provide the details to the Department for Work and Pensions once and they will notify the organisations that need to know. 

How does it work?

When you register a death the registrar adds the details of the deceased to the Tell Us Once national database. Once the details have been added, you will be given a reference number and can complete the process online or by phone. 

Access the Tell Us Once service online (external link)

Alternatively you can phone 0800 0857308. 

The organisations that Tell Us Once will notify are available on GOV.UK.

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