This section contains a helpful checklist on what to do when someone dies and contains information on death registrations and certificates. Find out how to register a death in British Columbia, order a death certificate or change a death record.
In British Columbia, when someone dies and you need to look after their affairs, you will make decisions about what to do next. Find out the first steps, discover support options and learn about funerals and wills. While each situation is different, this page will guide you in the right direction.
Death registration is important for a number of reasons. Besides creating a legal record of the death, it makes it possible to issue the death certificates that survivors need to apply for benefits or insurance, and to take care of the administrative tasks of settling an estate.
A death certificate is an extract of the information provided on the death registration. Individuals handling the estate of a deceased person will need to produce the death certificate whenever they are required to provide proof of death (e.g. to cancel a health card or driver's licence or to settle insurance or investments).
The Vital Statistics Agency maintains the wills registry in British Columbia.
A will is a legal document left by someone who’s died. It lets the court know what to do with that person’s estate
The BC Coroners Service is responsible for investigating and determining the circumstances of all unnatural, sudden and unexpected, unexplained or unattended deaths in the province. It makes recommendations to improve public safety and prevent death in similar circumstances.