,Working out what to do first when someone dies can always seem overwhelming. As well as letting everyone know, there are many organisations you need to notify when a person passes away.

What to do after a death

You will need to:

  • get a medical certificate
  • register the death
  • arrange the funeral

Medical certificate

  • You will need to do this immediately unless there is an inquest (the certificate is issued after this).
  • If the person died in hospital, the hospital will provide you with this.
  • If the person has died at home, you should call the person’s Doctor.
  • There is no cost for the certificate.

Register the death

  • Within five days for England, Wales or Northern Ireland; within eight days for Scotland.
  • If there’s an inquest - procurator fiscal if, in Scotland, registration is delayed until this is concluded.
Depending on which country the deceased lived in, you must register the death at:
You need the following information for the person who died:
  • medical certificate with the cause of death
  • full name including any previous names (maiden name)
  • date & place of birth
  • last known address
  • occupation of deceased
  • full name
  • date of birth
  • occupation of their surviving/late spouse or civil partner if they were married.
If available, you should also take their:
  • birth certificate
  • marriage or civil partnership certificate
  • National Insurance number
  • NHS medical card
  • proof of address, e.g. utility bill
  • driving license
  • passport

You should also bring identification (e.g. a driving licence) to show proof of your identity.

Arranging the funeral

Once you have registered the death, you can begin to arrange the funeral.
Most people do this through a funeral director, but it’s also possible to arrange the funeral yourself.

Notify government departments

Yous should do this as soon as possible after receiving the death certificate.


  • Passport Office to cancel their passport
  • HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) for their taxes
  • Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to stop their State Pension and benefits
  • Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) to cancel their driving license, car tax and car registration documents
  • Local council for their Council Tax, electoral register and other housing benefits
  • Public sector or armed forces pension scheme for their pension

Tell Us Once

You can use the Tell Us Once service to notify the above government departments at the same time.

Notify the person’s landlord and other organisations

You must do this as soon as possible.


  • If you were privately renting together and the lease is in the deceased’s name, you’ll need to let the landlord know and ask for it to be transferred to your name.
  • You’ll also need to have your name transferred for any bills or payments.
  • Organisations might include housing associations or council housing offices, mortgage providers, employers and utility providers.

Please note: You should contact each organisation.

Notify insurers and creditors

  • Ideally, you should do this as soon as possible after receiving the death certificate, or within a month of the death.
  • Notify
    • Insurance company
    • bank or building society
    • credit card companies
    • utility companies, Gas Electricity Providers etc..
    • pension provider
    • and any other companies that owed money to the person who died or was owed money by them.

Call the companies or visit the local branch (for banks or building society), or by visiting their website, where they might have an online form that you can complete.

There is no cost to notify these companies. But the person who died might have had outstanding debts or payment arrangements with these companies that need to be settled.

How you sort out the person’s financial affairs will depend on whether or not they have made a will.


  • You will need official copies of the death certificate when dealing with these companies.
  • You’ll also need to give the contact details of the executor or administrator of the estate.

Return the person’s passport and driving licence

Do this as soon as possible after receiving the death certificate

By post. See the following links for details of where to send these documents:

Information is from Money Advice Services - View the official Website

For more information on what to do when someone dies, view the Direct.Gov Website


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