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Registering a death

The registration process in Scotland involves the random selection of death certificates for review by Healthcare Improvement Scotland. Selection for review will be announced at your appointment with the Registrar and may involve a delay of up to three days. Funeral arrangements cannot be confirmed until the registration procedure has been fully completed and so it is strongly recommended that you try and register the death at the earliest opportunity.

A death may be registered by any relative of the deceased; any person present at the death; the deceased’s executor or legal representative; or the occupier of the premises where the death occurred. Or if no such person as above, any other person with knowledge of the particulars to be registered, i.e. neighbour, police officer, etc. The Funeral Director is not normally regarded as a qualified informant.


Particulars required:

• Full name and occupation.

• Full postal address.

• Date and country of birth.

• If the deceased was married or a civil partner; widowed or a surviving civil partner; divorced or his or her civil partnership was dissolved or annulled - the full name and occupation of the husband, wife or civil partner.

• If the deceased had been married or in a civil partnership more than once, you should also give the registrar details of previous spouses and civil partners.

• If the deceased was married or a civil partner at the date of death, tell the registrar the date of birth of the surviving widow, widower or civil partner.

• The full name and occupation of the deceased’s father and the full name and maiden surname of his or her mother.

• Whether the deceased was in receipt of a pension or an allowance from public funds.

• The name and address of the deceased’s NHS doctor.

Documents required by Registrar:

• Medical Certificate of Cause of Death (Form 11).

• The deceased’s birth certificate

• The deceased’s marriage or civil partnership certificates, (if available and where applicable).

• Documents relevant to any government pension (not the old age pension) payable to those in public service.

“Tell Us Once” Service

In some cases the Registrar will offer a telephone and online “Tell Us Once” service. Using the deceased’s National Insurance number, central and local Government agencies are informed and updated including council tax, passport, state pension, benefits, disability blue badge, and driving licence departments.

Documents you will receive from the Registrar:

• Certificate of Registration of Death (Form 14). This must be delivered to the Funeral Director as soon as possible.

• Form to be returned to the Department for Work and Pensions.

• An abbreviated extract (i.e. excluding cause of death and parentage details) of the death entry.

• A full extract of the death entry is available on payment of the appropriate fee.





The Lerwick Registrars office is located at:

The Town Hall,





Telephone: 01595 744562

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