Find out changes to our services and advice in response to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Register a stillbirth

Please accept our condolences on your loss. We realise that this is a very difficult time for you. In this section, there is information and guidance aimed at helping you through this painful process.

When and where should the stillbirth be registered?

A stillbirth occurring in Scotland must be registered within 21 days.  Please contact us to make an appointment

It may be registered in any Registration Office in Scotland

Who should register the stillbirth?

  • If married the child's mother or father. 
  • If unmarried the child's mother or mother and father

If this is not possible the following persons can register the birth: 

  • If married any relative of the mother or father with knowledge of the stillbirth.
  • If unmarried any relative of the mother with knowledge of the stillbirth.
  • The occupier of the premises in which the stillbirth took place.
  • Any person present at the stillbirth.

A father who is not married to the mother can only register the stillbirth and be named as the father if: 

  • He jointly signs the register with the mother
  • He and the mother sign declarations that he is the father, or
  • A court declares that he is the father and the mother registers the stillbirth.

Documents to be produced when registering the stillbirth 

You should take with you:

  • The certificate of stillbirth
  • The marriage certificate of the child's parents, if appropriate

Documents issued by the registrar at the time of registration

When the registration is complete, the Registrar will issue a certificate of Registration of Stillbirth, which should be given to the person in charge of the cemetery or crematorium.

If one of the parents registers the stillbirth and requests it, an extract of the entry in the register. 

What if the stillbirth occurs abroad?

You should register the stillbirth according to local regulations in the country concerned and obtain a certificate of the stillbirth. There is no facility available to register the stillbirth with the British Consul in that country.