A death certificate can refer to the document that is issued by a person, usually a registrar of vital records, that declares the date, location, and cause of a person’s death.
There are different reasons why you might need to obtain a death certificate. Usually they are needed to serve as proof for legal purposes, for instance, accessing pension benefits, claiming life insurance or settling estates. Death certificates are required to arrange a deceased's burial service, and to execute a will.
What is on a death certificate
Death records, (death certificates, obituaries or funeral home records) can include different data about the deceased, including:
- Names of their parents
- Names of their siblings, children, and spouse
- Date of birth
- Place of birth
- Date of marriage
- Place of marriage
- Military service
- Cause of death