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Obtaining a death certificate

who issues a death certificate

After a medical certificate of cause of death has been issued by a doctor, either the doctor, the executor or the funeral director should send it to the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages. Once the death has been registered, the death certificate can be issued.

A death certificate is issued only to the next of kin or a person authorised by them. An application form has to be completed by next of kin identifying themselves (with three forms of identification) and stating the reason for wanting the certificate. Alternatively, the funeral director can obtain the death certificate on the family’s behalf. Forms are available from the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages. Personal details of the deceased, their date of

birth, when and where they died, and the names of the deceased’s parents (including mother’s maiden name) and name of spouse needs to be provided.


As at August 2011 a non-urgent standard death certificate from the registry costs $46. Urgent certificates cost $68. All certificates are distributed through registered post.

Rest Assured: a Legal Guide to Wills, Estates and Funerals in New South Wales, 5th edition, by Rosemary Long and Trudy Coffey. Published by The Federation Press. 2011.

Online edition published by the Legal Information Access Centre, State Library of NSW. The online version has been updated to reflect changes to the law. Last updated October 2014.

© Library Council of New South Wales, 2011.

Category: Insurance

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