Bereavement Guidance - LCS Legal Dawlish

Bereavement Guide

When someone dies there are many decisions and arrangements to make, all of which can be difficult in a time of grief. To help, we've put together this checklist to guide you through the process.

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To register a death or obtain a death certificate you should contact your local authority and have the following information ready:


The deceased’s National Insurance number


The deceased’s NHS number


Date and place of birth


Date and place of death


Date and place of marriage


Any previous names or any alias that the deceased was known by


The deceased’s Tax Office address and Tax Reference details


The name and address of any surviving spouse or civil partner

  • The deceased will need to be formally identified by the next of kin
  • The next of kin may need to give permission for a hospital post-mortem examination if the cause of the death has to be confirmed; however, a coroner's post-mortem examination may be carried out without consent
  • The deceased will then be kept in the hospital mortuary until the Funeral Directors are appointed.

A doctor at the hospital will give you a medical certificate that shows the cause of death. This has to be produced before the death can be registered. You will be given a medical certificate in a sealed envelope addressed to the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages. You will also be given information on how to register the death. If the deceased is to be cremated, two doctors will be required to sign the medical certificate to show the deceased has been examined. A charge will be made for this.

The Coroner is a Doctor or Lawyer responsible for investigating deaths in particular situations, and can also arrange for a post-mortem examination of the deceased if necessary. An inquest is a Legal inquiry into the causes and circumstances of a death.

If death occurs in any of the following circumstances, the Doctor may report it to the Coroner:

  • After an accident or injury
  • Following an industrial disease
  • During a surgical operation
  • Before recovery from an anaesthetic
  • If the cause of death is unknown
  • If the death was violent or unnatural - i.e. suicide, accident, alcohol or substance misuse
  • If the death was sudden and unexplained - i.e. a sudden infant death (cot death)

In some cases, the Coroner will need to order a post-mortem. This is a medical examination of the body to find out more about the cause of death.

An inquest is a Legal inquiry into the medical cause and circumstances of a death. It is held in public, sometimes with a Jury.

Contact us today to discuss your requirements in complete confidence:

0345 017 8250(local rate call)