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NEW SOUTH WALES

By Hallie Halloran of Paperbark Deathcare

IN THE CASE OF BURIAL

If Death Occurs at Hospital, Nursing Home or Coronial

  • Ask the hospital, coroner, nursing home in advance what documents they require for transferring the body into your care, some have specific ones they will provide you

  • You will need a letter of permission to transfer from next of kin, a NSW Health Authority to transfer or the document they have provided

  • Forms to collect - Medical Cause of Death Certificate

  • You may need to engage a funeral director that does home transfers as some hospitals, nursing homes & the coroner will not release without a funeral director since Covid

  • If you are able to pick up and do the transfer yourself, you will need to do it with a stretcher/body trolly or a coffin. You have to have something for the body to go on/in then transfer/carry into a car or van yourself. They will not help you physically with any lifting, so have at least 3 people with you depending on the size of your person

If expected death at home

  • Call Palliative team to verify death. They will then organise attending the Doctor to certify death (within 12 hours)

  • Doctor arrives to do this or does it remotely if patient is known & has been seen in the last 3 months

  • Doctor issues Medical Cause of Death Certificate

Home Vigil/Home Funeral

  • You have 5 days to have your person at home. If longer is needed for cultural or spiritual reasons, an application for extension can be made to NSW Health

  • See Body Cooling document for body care

  • See Home Funeral Guidance document for funeral planning

  • See Coffin/Casket/Shroud Guidance document for sourcing these

Burial
 

  • Research your local cemeteries & request needed documentation. You may need to engage a Funeral Director with some cemeteries

  • If a home burial request needed documentation, throughout most of NSW, you need over 17 acres and it will cost around $500

  • Documents Cemeteries require to be scanned & emailed or copied hardcopies dropped off prior to burial

    1. ​Medical Cause of Death Certificate

    2. Application For Burial - provided by the Cemetery you are using

Death Registry - Births Deaths & Marriages
 


You will need to send a copy of the Medical Cause of Death Certificate with paperwork.

IN THE CASE OF CREMATION

If Death Occurs at Hospital, Nursing Home or Coronial
 

  • Ask the hospital, coroner, nursing home in advance what documents they require for transferring body into your care — some have specific ones they will provide you.

  • You will need a letter of permission to transfer from next of kin, a NSW Health Authority to transfer or the document they have provided.

  • Forms to collect - Medical Cause of Death Certificate & Attending Practitioner Cremation Permit (if either of these forms is not done upon your arrival, do not leave your person until you have them in your hands — in hard copy form, the originals. Some Hospitals will charge you $120 for the Cremation Permit).

  • You may need to engage a funeral director that does home transfers as some hospitals, nursing homes & the coroner will not release without a funeral director since Covid.

  • If you are able to pick up and do the transfer yourself, you will need to do it with a stretcher/body trolly or a coffin. You have to have something for the body to go on/in then transfer/carry into a car or van. They will not help you physically with any lifting so have at least 3 people with you.

If expected death at home
 

  • Call Palliative team to verify death. They will then organise attending the Doctor to certify death (within 12 hours).

  • Doctor arrives to do this or does it remotely if patient is known and has been seen in the last 3 months.

  • Doctor issues Medical Cause of Death Certificate + Cremation Certificate.

Medical referee’s cremation permit
 

  • In NSW, a second Cremation Permit is required by a Medical Referee. This CAN NOT be the same Doctor who issued the MCDC or Cremation Certificate. There is an online registry lookup to find one in your area here. Not all Doctors can issue this; they have to be a registered Medical Referee. You can look them up here.

  • If Coroner was involved, no Medical Referee Permit is needed.

  • Documents you will need to have with you when the Medical Referee fills out the certificate (you will also need to provide copies of these for Cremation):

    1. ​Application For Permission For Cremation With Statutory Declaration (Form C79), JP Required to sign

    2. Medical Cause of Death Certificate

    3. Cremation Certificate
       

If you run into difficulty getting a Medical Referee, find your nearest Funeral Director that offers Home Funeral Guidance & Services. Some doctors will do it remotely via video to view the body so you don't have to take your person's body to their surgery (they will come out to the car, so it can be helpful to do this on way to the crematorium if they will not do a home visit). These permits are $120.

Home Vigil/Home Funeral

  • You have 5 days to have your person at home. If longer is needed for cultural or spiritual reasons, an application for extension can be made to NSW Health

  • See Body Cooling document for body care

  • See Home Funeral Guidance document for funeral planning

  • See Coffin/Casket/Shroud Guidance document for sourcing these

Cremation

  • Research your local crematoriums and see if they will accept a body without a Funeral Director

  • Engage a Funeral Director for Transfer & Cremation. If necessary (Request a direct cremation, with 1 transfer fee, no body care charge & minus coffin fee if you have source your own if they say they don't do home funerals)

  • Documents Crematoriums require to be scanned & emailed or copied hardcopies dropped off prior to cremation.

    1. ​Medical Cause of Death Certificate

    2. Application For Permission For Cremation

    3. Attending Practitioners Cremation Certificate

    4. Medical Referee’s Cremation Permit

    5. Ashes Authority - to release the ashes, simply write on a piece of paper as the next of kin you will be collecting ashes or who ever will be collecting & sign

Death Registry - Births Deaths & Marriages

Cremation Forms

Coroner certificate Replaces forms 11 & 13.

  • Attending Practitioners certificate Medicare fee (approx. $110)

  • Application for permission to cremate: permission from next of kin & JP required.

  • Crematorium Fee $580 - $900.

Crematorium

  • Along with the body, handover forms 10, 11, 13, or coroners certificate registration of death to be signed and returned to you by crematorium.

  • Ashes requirements. After Cremation for death certificate fee (approx. $50)

RELEVANT LEGISLATION