When you’re arranging a cremation for a loved one, paperwork is often the last thing on your mind. Luckily, getting all the different cremation forms, papers and permits sorted is actually pretty simple. Here’s a quick guide to take you through them from, first to last.


A copy of the death certificate

  • Source: The local registry office.
  • Collected by: A close relative of the person who has died.
  • Cremation form fee: £11 each in England and Wales, £8 in Northern Ireland and £10 in Scotland.
  • Order a copy: England and WalesNorthern IrelandScotland.

While a copy of the death certificate isn’t strictly needed for the cremation itself, your funeral director may ask to see one before making arrangements. You can buy multiple certified copies when you register the death at the nearest registry office, or you can order copies online using the websites listed above.


The certificate for burial or cremation

  • Source: The local registry office.
  • Collected by: A close relative of the person who has died.
  • Cremation form fee: Free.

Also known as the green form, this cremation permit is given to you when you register the death. It essentially just authorises the cremation: if you give it to your funeral director, they will pass it on to the crematorium.

If the death has been investigated by the coroner, you will need them to give you a certificate of coroner (cremation form 6) instead. Your funeral director can collect this for you.

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The application for cremation (cremation form 1)

  • Source: This is usually given to the family by the funeral director.
  • Filled out by: The deceased’s nearest relative, or the executor of the estate.
  • Cremation form fee: Free.
  • Download link: Cremation form 1.

The application for cremation is basically a cremation consent form. It is usually completed by a close family member of the deceased – their partner, or child – and given to the funeral director, who passes it on to the crematorium.

The really important thing to remember about the cremation application form is that only the person who signs it can collect the ashes from the crematorium or the funeral director.


The medical certificates for cremation (cremation forms 4 and 5)

  • Source: Usually, the funeral director liaises with the hospital or GP clinic to get these sorted.
  • Filled out by: Medical form 4 is filled out by the doctor who was tending to the person who died when they passed, and medical form 5 is signed by an unrelated doctor.
  • Cremation form fee: £82 each, so £164 in total.
  • Download link: Cremation form 4Cremation form 5.

These cremation certificates are broadly similar: they detail the medical circumstances leading up to the death and confirm that the cremation can go ahead.

Medical certificate 4 is completed by the deceased’s doctor at the time of their death. Medical certificate 5 is completed by a second doctor, who talks to the first, examines the body and speaks with one other person present at the time of the death.

While these cremation papers are usually collected by the funeral director, family members have a legal right to see these documents if they wish.


The authorisation for cremation (cremation form 10)

  • Source: The crematorium.
  • Filled out by: A doctor at the crematorium.
  • Cremation form fee: Included in the cost of the cremation.
  • Download link: Cremation form 10.

The authorisation for cremation is the final medical sign-off at the crematorium, and doesn’t require any involvement from the bereaved. It simply confirms that everything is in order: that the cause of death has been agreed, or if not, that an inquest has been opened.

After the cremation: The cremation certificate

You can collect the cremation certificate from the crematorium or from your funeral director along with the ashes. It should be ready about one working day after the cremation. This form simply confirms when the cremation happened and who was cremated. It should be kept with the ashes, especially if you’re taking them abroad.


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