What is a Death Certificate and why is it needed?
A Death Certificate is issued by the Government to the nearest relatives of the demised (late), to specify the date, fact, and cause of death. In India, it is mandatory under the law (as per the Registration of Births & Deaths Act, 1969) to register every death with the concerned Government within 21 days.
It is necessary to register death to prove the time and date of death, to enable settlement of the property, to establish the fact of death for social, legal and official obligations, and to authorise the family to collect insurance and other benefits.
When and where apply for a death certificate?
If the death has taken place in hospitals, nursing homes or any medical institutions, the head of the department is responsible to report registrar within 21 days of the death (According to the Registration of Births and Deaths Act of 1966).
If the death has taken place at home, head of the family or any other family member responsible to report sub-registrar within 21 days of the death (According to the Registration of Births and Deaths Act of 1966).
Following list of documents required to be submitted when applying for the death certificate:
- Birth certificate of the demised as a age proof
- An affidavit which specifying the date and time of death
- Address proof (like electricity bill)
- The required fee in the form of court fee stamps
- A copy of the ration card
- The person who is applying for death certificate will submit the certificate of relationship with the demised, complete address and proof of nationality.
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How to apply for a death certificate?
For death certificate, you must first register the death. Registration should be done with the concerned local authorities within 21 days, fill-up the form prescribed by the registrar. This death certificate is issued after proper verification. The certificates issued from the registration centers/zonal offices of the local bodies. It takes 5 to 7 working days to get a death certificate.
Where to get application forms?
The application form to apply for a death certificate is available with the area’s local body authorities and the Registrar who maintains the Register of Deaths. An evidence of death is required either in the form of a hospital letter where the death took place or a certificate from a civil official who certified the death at either the crematorium or burial grounds.
What if you miss registration within the specified time?
Many times it is very difficult to manage legal formalities with the loss of your loved one. Then it may be a delay to reporting about death to the registrar (after 21 days but before the expiry of 30 days). Then they consider the request of a death certificate with a very nominal late fee.
However, if the delay is of more than 30 days, the same can be done with the permission of the Registrar and an affidavit from a notary, within one year of the date of death.
If the death is registered after a year, the applicant can get the certificate by order of a first-class magistrate only, which can be a lengthy process. For this, the applicant will need the Cause of Death Certificate, Cremation Certificate, and an Affidavit.