Death Certificates in Missouri – How Many do I Order?

On the passing of a loved one the State of Missouri issues a “Death Certificate”, a document that is important for a variety of reasons.  It contains much biographical information, and is relied upon by insurance companies, financial institutions, and others in paying benefits, transferring ownership, and documenting the date of death.  It is also an important genealogical record.

Normally death certificates take about two weeks to be issued, and are usually ordered by the funeral director handling the final arrangements.  In cases where the cause of death is  unclear, or where death occurs in another state or country it may take longer.

So, how many should you order?

At least ten, and perhaps fifteen or twenty.  Yes, it sounds like a lot, and there is expense involved.  However, it seems like everyone you deal with needs one, and if you run out, it can delay receiving insurance proceeds, closing bank accounts, etc.

So —  don’t pinch pennies here.  Many times they are needed months, or even years after the death.

As an aside, be certain to review all entries on the death certificate thoroughly as soon as you receive them.  Correcting errors can become much more difficult with time.

Email us if you have questions, or visit the Missouri Probate Information site


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