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Requirements & steps to apply for a death certificate

A death certificate is an official document issued by the government, confirming the death of an individual which includes vital information of the deceased

A casket during a burial

Losing a loved one is a difficult and emotionally taxing experience. Amidst the grieving process, there are practical matters that need attention, one of which is obtaining a death certificate.

In Kenya, like in many other countries, a death certificate serves as an essential legal document that verifies the death of an individual.

Not only does it provide closure, but it also plays a crucial role in settling the affairs of the deceased.

Here's a guide on how to obtain a death certificate in Kenya and why it's important to have one.

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To obtain a death certificate in Kenya, you can either apply online through the eCitizen portal or manually at the Registrar of Births and Deaths office.

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  1. Visit the eCitizen portal at www.ecitizen.go.ke and log in to your account. If you're a new user, sign up for an account.
  2. Once logged in, navigate to the Civil Registration Services dashboard and select 'Make Application'.
  3. Choose 'Death Certificate' and click on 'Apply Now'.
  4. Fill in the required details about the deceased in the form provided, including their identification details, location of death, burial permit number, gender, and date of death.
  5. Submit the form and pay the Sh200 fee online.
  6. Print a hard copy of your e-Citizen invoice and send it to the Registrar of Births and Deaths office at ACK Garden House behind NSSF Block, along Bishops Road.
  7. Your application will be processed within 3 working days, after which you can collect the certificate.

If you're outside Nairobi or prefer a manual application, follow these steps:

  1. Obtain a burial permit or notification of death.
  2. Complete Form D4 (applications for death certificate).
  3. Provide the deceased's ID.
  4. Pay the death certificate application fee.
  5. Submit these documents to the Registrar of Births and Deaths office in your district.
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  1. Visit the Central Records Registry at Sheria House, Nairobi.
  2. Present the deceased's passport or ID and a medical certificate from a certified medical practitioner.
  3. Provide travelling documents used to transfer the body to Kenya.
  4. If there's a previous death certificate from the country where the person died, verification will be done through the Kenyan Embassy there.
  5. Fill out Form BDA2 for the registration of the death of a Kenyan citizen who passed away abroad.
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A death certificate serves several vital purposes:

  1. Legal proof of death: A death certificate is an official document issued by the government that confirms the death of an individual.

It contains essential information such as the date, time, and cause of death, which are crucial for legal purposes.

2. Settling inheritance matters: It is often required to settle the estate of the deceased.

Banks, insurance companies, and other financial institutions typically require a death certificate before releasing funds or transferring assets to beneficiaries.

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3. Closure and documentation: Obtaining a death certificate provides closure to family members and serves as an important record for future reference.

It documents the existence of the deceased and is often required for various administrative purposes, such as claiming life insurance benefits or accessing pension funds.

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