Last updated: 18 August 2023

Next review: 18 August 2024

stillbirth is when a baby is born deceased after 24 completed weeks of pregnancy. It happens in around 1 in every 200 births in England. If the baby dies before 24 completed weeks, it's known as a miscarriage or late foetal loss.

If you are registering a stillbirth, please accept our sincerest condolences and read the following information thoroughly.

Who can register a stillbirth

If the baby’s parents are married, then the mother or father may register a stillbirth.

If the baby’s parents are not married, the mother may register a stillbirth. The father may accompany the mother to have his name appear on the certificate.

In exceptional circumstances, someone else might be able to register. You can find more information at GOV.UK guidance on registering a stillbirth.

Stillbirth registration process

Registering a stillbirth is a similar process to registering a death. If the stillbirth took place in Whipps Cross Hospital or your GP was informed, they will notify us. We will then contact you within 5-10 days to register the stillbirth over the phone.

If you have not heard from us during this timeframe, or if you have questions, we ask that you please call please call 0208 496 3000 and a member of the team will assist you.

Documents required for the registration phone call

During the phone call, you will need to email us a copy (e.g., scan or photo) of the medical certificate of stillbirth from the doctor or midwife. The registrar will ask for the:

  • Date and place of stillbirth
  • Child's forename(s) and surname, if the parents wish to name the child
  • Sex of the child
  • Parent forename(s) and surname
  • Parent date and place of stillbirth
  • Occupation at the time of the stillbirth
  • Usual address at the date of the stillbirth
  • Date of marriage (if applicable)
  • Number of previous children

If English is not your first language and help is needed, you should use an interpreter to translate the phone call. Errors that are identified after the registration is complete cannot be easily corrected

Certificate costs

Registering a stillbirth is free. All stillbirth certificates (short and long form) are £11 each.

You can purchase a short stillbirth certificate at the time of the registration phone call.

You are advised to purchase a minimum of three certificates to be used for official purposes, and you can buy extra copies during your registration phone call if needed.

The certificate(s) will then be mailed to your home.

When you make your booking, you'll be asked for payment by debit or credit card. We do not accept cash.

Additional information

For all our services, please visit our Register Office webpage.

If you need a copy of a stillbirth certificate, read our copy certificate information for costs and how to apply.

To make a general enquiry to the Register Office, this can be done through My Account.