How To Obtain Death Certificate In Nigeria

Do you want to know how to obtain a death certificate in Nigeria and you don’t know how to go about it? In this post, we will guide you the procedures for getting a death certificate for a deceased loved one. Just like in the case of how to obtain a birth certificate in Nigeria, the government body responsible for issuing a certificate of death in the country is the National Population Commission (NPC).

How To Obtain Death Certificate In Nigeria

As earlier stated, the National Population Commission (NPC) is the federal government approved institution in the country that is saddled with the responsibility of registering births and deaths and issuing certificates to that effect. All births and deaths in Nigeria are registered, certified and very well documented and this is a very important process that enables the NPC to know the number of people in the country, whether they are newly born or they just died.

Note that the certificates that are issued by the NPC are valid for all time and as such, effort must be made to obtain them and keep for memory sake and official reasons. Very often, many people in the country want to get a death certificate for their deceased loved one but do not know how to go about it. They as how much it costs to obtain a death certificate in the country from different sources and they get different responses.

The truth about this matter of cost of death certificate in Nigeria is that getting a death certificate in the country is totally free of charge and there are no hidden charges but this is applicable in cases where the death is registered within a certain certain timeframe usually around the first months of death. also, you should note that death certificates which are issued by hospitals and which are very compulsory in order to get the final death certificate from the NPC are not free. The cost is different from one hospital to another.

HOW TO REGISTER A DEATH WITH THE NATIONAL POPULATION COMMISSION

In order to register a death in Nigeria today, certain conditions must be fulfilled. These conditions include the following:

  • The death must be registered by an NPC official in the area that it happened
  • The person who applies for a death certificate on behalf of a deceased loved one must have proof of death
  • The person who applies for a death certificate on behalf of a deceased loved one must be a blood relative of the deceased
  • The death should be reported to the nearest National Population Commission office within 7 days (1 week) of the death
  • If the death is reported after 30 days (1 month) and within 12 months (1 year) since the death date, it can still be registered for a fee that is prescribed by the NPC
  • Any death reported after 12 months since the death date can be registered only if the Deputy Chief Registrar of the NPC issues a written and signed permission.

HOW TO GET DEATH CERTIFICATE IN NIGERIA

In order to receive a death certificate on behalf of a deceased loved one in Nigeria presently, certain conditions must be taken into cognizance. A certificate from the hospital in which the death took place must be issued at a fee set by the hospital and as aforementioned. this is not the NPC death certificate but a certificate of death from the particular medical facility where the person died which would be presented to the NPC where they can verify the person and cause of death, and issue a national death certificate for free.

In a situation where the death took place outside a hospital, it is very important to apply for a certificate from medical practitioners after the deceased must have been looked at and the cause of death ascertained. This  document is then accepted by a registrar of births and deaths in any of nearest National Population Commission offices in the area where the death occurred.

In order to obtain a death certificate for a deceased loved one, the following information are required:

  • Application for the death certificate
  • Name of the person reporting the death
  • Name of the deceased person
  • Birth place and birth date of the deceased person
  • Age, gender and marital status of the deceased person at the moment of their death
  • Place of death of the deceased
  • Cause of death of the deceased
  • Detailed information on the spouses or children of the deceased person (especially if they were dependent on the deceased one)
  • Valid means of identification of the person reporting the death
  • Copies of the documents of the deceased
  • Death certificate issued by a hospital
  • Proof that the deceased is a relative of the person reporting the death

As long as you can prove that you are related to the deceased and that the cause of death can be ascertained, the process of obtaining a death certificate on behalf of a deceased loved one from the National Population Commission is straightforward.

CASES WHEN A DEATH CERTIFICATE CANNOT BE ISSUED BY THE NPC AND OTHER SPECIAL CASES

There are a number of situations when a death certificate cannot be issued by the NPC and they are:

  • When a person dies under suspicious circumstances
  • When a person is a subject of a police investigation
  • When the family of the deceased is against autopsy

When this happens, hospitals have no right to issue any death certificates. Also, if the deceased person was a criminal who died in prison custody, the deceased body can never be returned to its family and a death certificate will not be issued.

Blood relatives are not the only ones who can received death certificate on behalf of a deceased person and this is only possible if the deceased had no living blood relatives but a spouse only. Technically, spouses are not blood relatives, yet, they can receive certificates of their spouses’ death.

Other family members can as well obtain death certificates on behalf of dead blood relatives due to financial conditions or literacy. When this happens, it is important to appoint somebody, who may likely not be an immediate family member to represent the family. Biological children of the blood relatives of the dead person can be the representatives in such a scenario.

The Author

Maduawuchi Obialo

Maduawuchi Obialo is the founder of Nigerian Guide and an Editor at Nigerian Infopedia. He is a professional Web Content Developer and a Biochemist.

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