Declaration of death

Declaration of death at the Civil RegistryYour Europe

Determination of death

A death must be officially determined. If the death occurs at home, you should alert your general practioner (GP) or the doctor on call. He or she will determine the death and prepare and sign a death certificate. In case of a death in the hospital, they will take care of the death certificate there.

If the deceased had decided to donate his or her body to science or to donate organs (NL), you should inform the hospital as soon as possible.


The death of a person must be declared as soon as possible to the civil registry department of the municipality where he or she died.
Usually, the undertaker takes care of the death declaration and all administrative formalities.

You need to bring the following documents for the declaration:

  • The death certificate issued by the doctor
  • The identity card of the deceased
  • The identity card of the declarant
  • The marriage book of the deceased
  • The driving licence of the deceased
  • Where appropriate, the last will and testament of the deceased

In the case of a suspicious or violent death, you should bring the following additional documents:

  • a police officer's report 
  • permission for burial or cremation from the public prosecutor

Death certificate

A death certificate proves the fact of death and establishes the identity of the deceased. This deed is required before the registrar of births, marriages and deaths can give permission for the transport and burial or cremation of the deceased.

The death certificate is drawn up in the municipality where the person died. The municipality in question then forwards the certificate to the municipality where the deceased lived.

A death certificate is drawn up and entered in the civil registry registers of the place of death. It is also transferred to the registers of civil status of the deceased's last place of residence.

You can request an extract or copy of the death certificate (NL)  from the local authority where the death certificate is registered. Your municipality will make a copy, which you will get free of charge or for an amount of no more than ten EUR.

Other administration

Do not forget to also inform the following organisations and institutions:

•    Bank
•    Notary
•    Insurance company
•    Health insurance fund
•    Pension service
•    Tax office
•    Homeowner
•    Water company
•    Gas and electricity supplier
•    …

For more information, contact the civil registry department of your municipality or visit these websites: