Bennetts Funeral Directors in Essex
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How to register a death

Before you can begin to plan a funeral you need to register the death at the Registrar’s Office within 5 days of receiving the medical certificate. Here we will guide you through the steps you need to take to register a death.

Home » What to do when someone dies » Register a Death
When someone dies

When someone dies, the first steps you need to take will depend on how and where they died. See our useful guide to find out more.

What to do when someone dies

Choosing a funeral director

The death of a loved one is one of the most upsetting experiences we have to go through. So, when choosing a good funeral director, what should you be looking out for?

Choosing a Funeral Director

Probate & the will

When someone dies, you may be given the task of sorting out their property, money and other possessions, to be able to carry out this job you will need to apply for Probate. Before you begin this process you need to find out if there’s a Will as soon as you can, it may contain important instructions such as the deceased’s funeral wishes. The Will also names the executor and any beneficiaries.

Probate and Will Guide

Help with funeral costs

Bereavement is, without doubt, a devastating experience that can increase financial strain. If you’re in a position where you can’t afford to pay for a funeral, there are options available and you may be eligible for a Funeral Expenses Payment from the Social Fund.

Help with Funeral Expenses

Who to notify

Having to deal with the affairs of the deceased immediately after their death can be complicated and upsetting, however, sorting out these issues is an essential task that we can guide you through. If you are worried about who to tell when someone has died, our simple checklist will act as a handy guide to help you through the process.

Who to Notify Checklist

Useful contacts


Essex Registrar
Tel: 0345 603 7632
Find your nearest registration office when registering a death

Essex Coroners Office

Chelmsford: 0333 013 5000
Essex & Thurrock: 01245 506837
Southend: 01245 506806

See Other Useful Contacts

Funeral price options

We are pleased to offer a number of price options, which include Unattended Cremation, Simple Cremation, and the Traditional Funeral package.

See Our Price Options

I was extremely pleased with the way in which I was treated whilst organising my late mother’s funeral. In these very difficult times, I felt that Bennetts and in particular Martyn treated the whole procedure with respect and compassion. It helped a lot. Thank you.”

Mrs O

from South Woodham Ferrers

review stars

Where do you register a death?

Once you are in possession of the ‘Medical Certificate of Cause of Death’ (MCCD), it should be taken to the Registrar of Birth, Deaths, and Marriages within 5 days. In Essex, the death can be registered at any registration office although the districts of Southend and Thurrock are considered as separate areas outside of Essex. In either case, an appointment needs to be made.

During the Covid 19 Pandemic

The Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (MCCD) has to be emailed to before you can book an appointment. Contact the medical practitioner, bereavement suite who emailed the MCCD to check they have received the auto-response from the registration service. As soon as you know that the MCCD has been received you can book an appointment to register a death.

You can also refer to our USEFUL CONTACTS page.

Who can register a death?

People with the legal responsibility to register a death include:

  • Any relative of the deceased
  • A person who was present at the death
  • An administrator at the hospital or care home where the person died
  • The person arranging the funeral – family, friend, executor of the will, (not the Funeral Director)

    What do you need to register a death?

    These are the documents the Registrar will require to enable the registration to take place:

    • Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (you must take this with you if issued by the Doctor)
    • Medical Card or NHS number (if available)
    • Birth Certificate (if available)
    • Marriage Certificate (if applicable)
    • Name email address and postal address of your funeral director

    What information will be required to register a death?

    This is the information the Registrar will require to enable the registration to take place:

    • Date and place of death
    • Full name of deceased (maiden name or any other name they used if applicable)
    • Date and place of birth of the deceased
    • Home address and postcode of the deceased
    • Marital Status of the deceased
    • Occupation of the deceased
    • Full name, date of birth, occupation of surviving spouse or civil partner

    When the death has been registered, what certificates will I receive?

    • Disposal Certificate for the Funeral Director (Green Certificate) – No Fee. Currently, this is being emailed to the funeral director
    • Social Security Certificate (White Certificate) – No Fee. This will be given on all occasions and should be handed in at the local D.W.P Offices with any relevant books
    • Death Certificate – These may be obtained from the Registrar for a nominal fee and are required as proof of death for insurance purposes, bank account, etc. Ensure you order as many as you think you will need; currently, these are being posted

    If you use the Tell Us Once service this will reduce the number of certificates you need.  Once you have registered the death, any certificates you’ve paid for will be sent to you.  There’s no fee for registering the death.

    Cremation certificates

    When cremation is chosen there are statutory legal forms, known as cremation certificates 4 and 5 which need to be completed by two medical Doctors.  If HM Coroners are involved often the cremation certificate 6 will replace 4 and 5. These forms are the responsibility of the Funeral Director to obtain and therefore, we will liaise with the necessary people to have these completed.

    If you need assistance in the registration of a death in Essex, Bennetts Funeral Directors can help with any queries you may have.

    Call 01277 210104 and 01277 627492  we are here to help.