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Register burial

In Germany, funerals are generally registered by the next of kin or by a funeral home. Depending on the region, you can choose between

  • Burial in the ground
  • Cremation (forest burial, burial at sea, urn burial)
  • Anonymous burial

A burial is possible at the earliest 48 hours after the death. Exceptions can be made by the responsible health authority for good cause. With the exception of burial at sea, all burials are subject to statutory cemetery requirements.

The burial must be arranged in the following order:

  • Spouse or registered partner,
  • children
  • grandchildren
  • parents
  • grandparents
  • Siblings

If no one is responsible for the burial, the municipality responsible for the place of death or discovery must arrange the burial.

Responsibility lies with the municipality, the joint municipality and the city.

Please contact

  • a doctor to carry out the post-mortem examination and issue a death certificate,
  • to the relevant registry office for the issue of the death certificate,
  • for the burial, the cemetery administration of the place of burial,
  • for the transfer from the place of death/cremation to the cemetery/crematorium to a funeral home.
  • to the competent lower health authority (public health officer) for a second post-mortem examination due to cremation

You want to bury a deceased person.

For the funeral

  • Death certificate or notification of death
  • If applicable, release certificate from the public prosecutor's office in the event of a non-natural cause of death

In the case of an urn burial:

  • Certificate of the second post-mortem examination before cremation

In the case of transportation from or to a foreign country:

  • The transportation of a corpse from abroad to Lower Saxony may only take place upon presentation of a corpse passport or equivalent document.
  • For the transportation of a corpse from Lower Saxony to a location outside Lower Saxony, the lower health authority will issue a corpse passport upon request.

Registration itself is free of charge.There are fees for

  • the issue of the death certificate,
  • the issuing of the burial permit,
  • other necessary official acts,
  • issuing a corpse passport

If the next of kin do not arrange for the burial of a deceased person, the burial will be arranged by the responsible local regulatory authority and the persons responsible for the burial will be jointly and severally liable for the costs incurred.

If the relatives are not in a position to bear the funeral costs and the estate of the deceased is also insufficient, they can apply to the relevant social welfare office to have the costs covered.

Fee: free of charge

The burial can take place at the earliest 48 hours after death. Bodies should be buried or cremated within eight days of death. Urns should be buried within one month of cremation.

The processing time may vary.

There is no legal remedy.

Cemetery owners in Lower Saxony can only be

  • Municipalities
  • churches, parishes
  • other religious and ideological communities if they are corporations, institutions or foundations under public law

Some municipalities or companies commissioned by them offer the option of urn burial in a forest cemetery.
Crematoria (cremation facilities) can also be operated by private bodies in Lower Saxony.

In Lower Saxony, cemetery operators can only be the state or church municipality, joint municipality and town. Some places offer the option of urn burial in a forest cemetery.
Crematoria (cremation facilities) can also be operated by private bodies in Lower Saxony.

Lower Saxony Ministry for Social Affairs, Health and Equality (Department 405 - Legal Affairs in the Healthcare Sector)

The text was automatically translated based on the German content.

competent Bodies

Landkreis Emsland - Fachbereich Gesundheit
Address: Ordeniederung 1 , 49716 Meppen
Postal address: Post Office Box 15 62 , 49705 Meppen
Telephone: 05931 44-0
Fax: 05931 44-3621
Transport Connection:
Station Haltestelle Kreishaus
Bus: 993

Building Access
elevator available, wheelchair-accessible


Sophie-Marie Brux
Telephone: 05931 44-2193
D 193
responsible for:

Data protection information

Landesbeauftragte für den Datenschutz Niedersachsen
Address: Prinzenstraße 5, 30159 Hannover
Telephone: +49 511 12045-00
Fax: +49 511 12045-99

Source: Serviceportal Niedersachsen (Portalverbund des Bundes und der Länder)