This page provides an overview only of the requirements for funeral directors about registering a death.
For full requirements, refer to relevant legislation including the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act 1996 and the Cemeteries and Crematoria Act 2003.
As a funeral director, you must notify the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages within 7 days of a disposal of a deceased person's remains.
The Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act 1996 does not provide for you to charge a fee for this.
To notify the Registrar:
Working with medical practitioners
You (funeral directors) share with medical practitioners the duty of registering a death.
By law, medical practitioners need to:
- Send the medical certificate of cause of death (MCCD) or perinatal death (MCCPD) to BDM
- Provide you with a signed copy of the MCCD or MCCPD, that you should keep safe. The Cemeteries Act 2003 requires you to provide it when disposing of the body
The Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act 1996 does not provide for medical practitioners to charge a fee for supplying the cause of death certificate. If you're finding it hard to get the MCCD or MCCPD from the medical practitioner, contact BDM.
Funeral directors don't need to register stillbirths, but you might need to complete paperwork under the Cemeteries and Crematoria Act 2003.
If the Victorian resident dies overseas, you usually don't need to register the death in Victoria. The death should be registered in the country where the person died. However, an overseas death may be registered in Victoria if the deceased person:
- Normally lived in Victoria
- Owned property in Victoria
This may help with legal or financial matters.
Sometimes families contact BDM directly about an overseas death and we assist them to register the death here. Refer to Overseas deaths for more information about this.
However, sometimes you may need to register the death of a person who died:
- In an aircraft on its way to a Victorian airport
- On a boat or vessel on its way to a Victorian dock
- Outside Australia, if they lived in Victoria or have property in Victoria
- Overseas and their body is being disposed of in Victoria.
To register the death, you need:
- Proof that the person normally liven in Victoria (such as rates notice or utility bill)
- The overseas death certificate with sufficient cause of death information. (Documents in languages other than English need to be translated by a NAATI translator )
- A certified copy of a proof of identity document of the deceased (such as driver license or passport).