Funeral or cremation?

A funeral is a ceremony in which someone who has died is buried. In case of a cremation, you can have the ashes scattered, buried or interred at the cemetery or at a location of your choice. Find out what you need to do.


The next of kin can have the deceased buried in:

  • the municipality where the deceased had his address of domicile;
  • the municipality where the family holds a concession to bury; 
  • the municipality of death.


In case of a cremation, the next of kin can have the ashes scattered, buried, or have them interred at the cemetery. They can also have the ashes scattered, buried or stored at another location than the cemetery. 

Required documents

For a funeral or a cremation, you always need the following documents: 

  • death certificate (model IIIC or IIID): can be collected from the mortuary during opening hours
  • the ID card of the deceased
  • the marriage certificate ('marriage booklet') 
  • permission to bury: will be provided by the municipality where the funeral will take place
  • a last will certificate: this describes the manner of burial. The certificate is issued by the civil registry department of the deceased's place of residence.

Extra documents in case of cremation

For a cremation you need extra documents, in addition to the ones mentioned above:  

  • a medical certificate provided by the attending doctor;
  • an 'application to cremate' certificate’;
  • a certificate from the city doctor;
  • If necessary an application certificate for the scattering of the ashes, burying or storing the urn in another location than the cemetery. This declaration needs to be signed by all surviving relatives by blood or by marriage of the first degree. Written consent from the owner: if you are unable to prove that the location is owned by the next of kin. 

Donating the body to science

The deceased may also have chosen in life to make his body available to science. You can get more information at the Vesaliusinstituut via +32 16 33 66 81.

Last edit: 23 March 2023