If you want to cremate the person who has died there’s more paperwork than for burial. You must

Apply for cremation by filling in the form you can download here. If you are not paying a funeral director to deal with the crematorium, you’ll find useful guidelines here.

Ensure that a second doctor certifies cause of death.

The reason why a second doctor must certify the death is to avoid a situation where a) doubt is later expressed concerning cause of death or b) it is suspected the person has been murdered by their doctor (cf Dr Shipman) or somebody else. If a body is buried it can be dug up (exhumed) and tested. If it’s been cremated it can’t.

When you apply for cremation, the doctor who first certified the death plus a second doctor must support your application. The guidelines they follow are here. The forms they fill in are, for the first doctor, here and for the second doctor here.

These forms – the application for cremation plus certification of cause of death by both doctors – are examined by the medical referee at the crematorium. More info here. When the referee is satisfied, they fill in this form here.

If you want to inspect the medical certificates submitted by the two doctors (Forms Cremation 4 and Cremation 5) before the medical referee authorises the cremation you can do that. Find out your rights here.

For all other information concerning the Cremation Regulations 2008, click here.