A death in the family is often one of the hardest times to go through. On top of a loss, you’re left having to figure out what to do with official paperwork. So, we’ve made a guide for exactly who you need to notify. You will need to register the death within five days – including weekends.

If the individual has died in a UK hospital then the doctors should issue a medical certificate and certificate of death as well as assist you with further steps. If the individual died abroad then you need to register the death in the country as well as registering it with the country’s British Consul.

What information you will need

To make the process as smooth as possible, having certain information ready and in front of you is really useful. This information is:

  • NHS number
  • Passport number
  • Driving licence number
  • Vehicle registration number
  • National Insurance number
  • Date and place of birth
  • Name and address of next of kin, as well as the person or company dealing with the estate (the ‘executor’)
  • Tax reference number

You may also need:

  • Details of benefits they were receiving
  • Details of local council services they were receiving
  • Contact details and NI number of surviving spouse or civil partner

This may seem like a mountain of information, but having it at hand will save you a lot of rifling through papers when calling relevant organisations.

Use the government’s ‘Tell us once’ service

For most government bodies, you can use the ‘tell us once’ service through this link. It’s a really great way to notify a whole host of government organisations, from HMRC to the DVLA, about a death. You can notify them individually if you wish, but this service saves a lot of time.

Notify other organisations

Non-governmental organisations will need to be notified individually – as well as some semi-governmental bodies: These often include:

  • Banks
  • Mortgage, pension, or insurance providers
  • Registered GP
  • Any relevant employers
  • Dentist
  • Optician
  • Charities they subscribed to
  • Any magazines, newspapers, or other media the deceased person subscribed to

You’ll need to return the driver’s licence to the DVLA – as well as their passport to the Passport Office.

Another useful organisation to contact is the Bereavement Register. Registering there removes the deceased’s details from most mailing lists and usually stops advertising mail being addressed to them.

If the deceased person owned property

If the deceased person owned property, then there’s a process for reporting the death too. This will vary based on whether they were a joint owner or a sole owner. If the former, then a form will need to be sent to HM Land Registry to remove their name from the register. If the latter, the property will usually be transferred to either a person inheriting the property or a third party (usually buying the property). For more information on this process, the government’s property records page is really useful.

If you haven’t yet made funeral arrangements then contact us on 01795 666355 or info@havills.org.uk.