Register a stillbirth

We understand this is a challenging time and will endeavour to make this process as easy as possible.

The hospital/surgery must send the medical certificate of cause of stillbirth to our office before you book an appointment. 

Stillbirths in England and Wales must be registered within 42 days of the stillbirth. 

Where a baby is stillborn after the 24th week of pregnancy, you will be given a Medical Certificate of Stillbirth signed by the midwife or doctor, which you should provide to the registrar.

If no doctor or midwife was present and no doctor or midwife has examined the body, you must sign Form 35, which the registrar will give you.

Please ring to make an appointment or for further information, 01522 782244.

Who can register a stillbirth

  • Parents who are married or in a registered civil partnership with each other at the time of the stillbirth - the mother, father, or second parent can register. 
  • Parents not in a marriage or a registered civil partnership together - the father or second parent must attend the appointment with the mother for their details to be included on the registration. No father or second parent's details will be recorded if the mother attends alone.
  • Two female parents not in a marriage or registered civil partnership together - both must attend the appointment and meet the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act requirements if the second female details are to be included in the registration. No second female parent details will be recorded if the mother attends alone.

Information you need when registering a stillbirth

  • Place and date of the stillbirth
  • Forenames and surname, if the parents wish to name the child
  • Sex of the child
  • Parents' names, surnames and addresses (including any former names)
  • Places and dates of parents' birth
  • Date of parents' marriage or civil partnership (if applicable)
  • Parents' occupations
  • Mother's maiden surname (if applicable)

What should you take

Please bring the Medical Certificate of Stillbirth from the hospital or midwife.

It would also be helpful for you to bring the following:

  • Your passport or birth certificate
  • Proof of your current address
  • Proof of any former name or names (for example, change of name deed or marriage/civil partnership certificate)

Note that you are not legally required to produce these documents, but if you do, they can help to ensure the registration is completed accurately.

What will you be given

The registrar will provide the following:

  • A Certificate for Burial or Cremation for the funeral directors
  • A Certificate of Registration of Stillbirth

You can also get certified copies of the entry.

Funeral arrangements

The health authority may offer to arrange a burial or cremation, free of charge, for every stillborn baby, whether born in a hospital or at home. 

Please discuss funeral arrangements with the hospital staff. The baby will be cremated or buried after a simple ceremony if you accept the offer. 

If you wish, you can arrange the funeral yourselves if, for instance, the hospital cannot arrange the funeral to meet your religious beliefs.

Maternity Benefits

You may still be entitled to statutory maternity pay or  maternity allowance.