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Registering a Stillbirth

We understand that it can be very daunting to have to face registering a stillbirth. 

A stillborn baby is legally defined as a baby born after the 24th week of pregnancy, who did not at any time after being born breathe, or show any other signs of life.

When a child is stillborn, the doctor or midwife who was present at the birth or examined the baby will issue a medical certificate of stillbirth. This certificate will be required when you attend the register office.

To arrange an appointment please telephone 0300 303 2472 between 9am and 4.30pm, Monday to Friday, and one of the team will assist you.

(Please note that during peak times you may need to leave a voicemail message but be assured we will return your call as quickly as is possible).

A stillbirth can only be registered in the district where the event took place. 

If the stillbirth took place in Cumbria please book an appointment as follows:-


1 Telephone

Call  0300 303 2472

Calls will be answered Monday to Friday 9am to 4.30pm

Due to high call volumes you may be required to leave a voice message and a member of staff will return your call as soon as possible.  We recommend booking online if you are able to do so.

2 In Person

We would discourage clients from calling at the office to make an appointment as our staff will be engaged with clients.  This may result in a lengthy wait until someone is able to make an appointment for you.  This is unlikely to be for the same day.  If you wish to do so our service points are listed here:

Cumbria Registration Service Points


Stillbirths in England and Wales should normally be registered within 42 days of the stillbirth.

Should the stillbirth not be registered within the 42 days, please contact our office on 0300 303 2472 and we will support and guide you through the process. 

Any stillbirths registered after 12 months will need to be authorised by the Registrar General for England and Wales.

A stillbirth must be registered in the district in which it takes place. If it is not possible to attend a registration office within the district then it is possible to register at a more convenient registration office by means of a legal declaration. This may delay the issue of relevant documents for a few days.

Stillbirth registration began on 1st July 1927 to help protect infant life.  It gives parents the opportunity to have their child officially acknowledged and to give him or her names if they wish to.  It is also an important source of historical and statistical information

Parents married to each other
If the parents of the child are married to each other at the time of the stillbirth, either the mother or father may register.

Parents not married to each other
If the parents of the child were not married to each other at the time of the stillbirth, information about the mother of the child will always be included in the register.
Information about the father may only be included in the register in the following circumstances:
        the mother and father attend the register office and sign the register together
        either parent can attend the register office with a statutory declaration acknowledging parentage from the other partner
Although the majority of stillbirths are registered by the parents, if it is difficult for them to attend, other people may be able to attend to provide the information. This may often be people in authority from the hospital where the stillbirth took place.

The information detailed below will be required:

* Date and place of stillbirth
* Forename(s) and Surname, if the parents wish to name the child
* Sex of the baby

* Forename(s)
* Surname
* Maiden name (if married)
* Date of birth
* Place of birth (town and county)
* Address of mother at time of stillbirth
* Occupation (at the time of baby's stillbirth or if not employed at that time, last previous employment)
* If married to father at time of stillbirth - date of marriage
* No. of previous children

FATHER  (where these details are to be entered in the register - see note above)
* Forename(s)
* Surname
* Date of birth
* Place of birth (town and county)
* Occupation at time of stillbirth, or if not employed at that time, last previous employment

It is important that the information supplied is accurate as any corrections to the register may be difficult to make later.

Certificate of registration

A certificate of registration will be issued free of charge to the person who registers the stillbirth. This certificate provides proof that the stillbirth has taken place. It includes any names given and the date of the stillbirth

Certificate for burial or cremation

The registrar will issue a certificate for the burial or cremation of the stillborn child. This certificate would normally be given to the funeral director who was making the arrangements. No funeral for the child can take place without this certificate.

Stillbirth certificate

After a stillbirth has been registered, a certificate showing the full details included in the entry can be provided.  There is a statutory fee of £ 4.00 for this certificate, however in Cumbria we provide this free of charge at the time of registration.

Important information

Contact Details


Tel: 0300 303 2472