What information is on a UK death certificate?
For all UK death certificates you will find the following information:
Registration district, sub-district and county
The registration location provides the official area where the death was registered. This will be the district within which the death was registered rather than the exact place of death. For example, for someone who died near Wembley Stadium in London, the following details would be provided:
- Sub-District: Wembley
- District: Brent
- County: Greater London
Full name of deceased person
The full name of the deceased person will be provided including any supplied middle names. Bear in mind that the name of the deceased will be whatever was provided by the person registering the death. It is quite common that a friend registers the death who may have known that person by a different name or nickname (i.e. Jonathan Grover may be recorded as Jon Grover or John Grover on the certificate). Similarly, first and middle names may be reversed if the deceased used their middle name throughout life.
Date of death
The full date of death is stated for the person on the certificate. Under normal circumstances this will not include the time of death.
Place of death
The certificate will state the exact place of death as recorded by the medical professional at the time.
The sex of the deceased individual will be recorded on the death certificate.
Maiden name of deceased
In the case of a female death, if applicable, the maiden name of that person will be recorded when known.
Where known, the date and place of birth will be recorded on the certificate.
In the case of death registrations, someone takes on the responsibility of attending a registration office to register the death. This will usually be a family member, friend or medical/nursing professional. The details of this person, known as the informant, will be recorded on the certificate. The informant's name, address, and relationship to the deceased will be recorded.
Cause of death
The cause of death will be recorded on the death certificate. This will be established by either a medical professional or, in the event that the cause is initially unknown, by a coroner.
Name of coroner
If the cause of death has been referred to the coroner to be established, the name of that coroner will be recorded on the death certificate.
Date the death was registered
It is typical that the death will be recorded on a different day to the date of death. Assuming the death has not been referred to the coroner, it must be recorded at the local register office within 5 days of the date of death. The date of the actual registration is recorded on the deceased's death certificate.
Details of registrar
The registrar that handled the registration of the death will be recorded on the certificate. This could be either a handwritten signature or typed (in recent years).
Date the certificate was produced
In the case of a re-issue of the original registration document, the actual date that the document was issued is recorded on the death certificate.
Re-issued death certificates will include words to the effect of "Certified to be a true copy of an entry in the death register". This is standard wording on every official death certificate as it relates to the fact that the certificate is, in essence, copying details from the original death register. It does not mean that it is a photocopy of an original and therefore can be used for all official purposes such as estate duties or pension arrangements.