Tell Us Once Service

When someone has died, there are lots of things that need to be done, at a time when you probably least feel like doing them. 

Tell Us Once is voluntary to use and very helpful. It enables you to report a death only once, telling central and local government services securely and confidentially without you having to inform them individually

Many services can be notified and these include:

  • the local council - to update services such as Council Housing, Housing Benefit, Council Tax, Blue Badge and remove the person from the Electoral Register
  • HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) - to deal with personal tax and to update regarding Child Benefit and Tax Credits claims (contact HMRC separately for business taxes, like VAT
  • Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) - to update benefits information for example: State Pension, Universal Credit 
  • Passport Office - to cancel a British passport
  • Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) - to cancel a driving licence and to remove registered keeper details, possibly for up to five vehicles
  • Public Sector or Armed Forces Pension Schemes - to update pension records

After you have registered the death with the Registrar

The registrar will provide you with a unique Tell Us Once reference number.

This reference number will enable you to access the service Online at GOV.UK.

If you have been issued with a Coroners Fact of Death (Interim Death Certificate) 

You can still use the service although the death has not been registered at this stage.  In order for the Registrar to provide the unique Tell Us Once reference number they will need a copy of the Coroners Fact of Death (Interim Death Certificate).  

If you have had this document emailed to you, please forward the document to TUO@cumbria.gov.uk and tell us your name and contact number.  One of our team will then telephone you within 48 hours to provide the service and the unique reference number.

If you had this document sent to you in the post then please refer back to HM Coroner and give them your consent to share the Coroners Fact of Death (Interim Death Certificate) and your contact details to us.  Again upon receipt we will contact you within 48 hours to provide the service and the unique reference number.

It will help you to have all the relevant information listed below about the person before using Tell Us Once:                                                                                                        

  • date of birth
  • address of the deceased
  • National Insurance number
  • driving licence number
  • vehicle registration number
  • passport number


You will also need:

  • details of any benefits or entitlements they were receiving, for example State Pension, Universal Credit
  • details of any local council services they were receiving, for example Adult Social Services, Blue Badge, travel pass
  • the name and address of their next of kin
  • the name and address of any surviving spouse or civil partner
  • the name, address and contact details of the person or company dealing with their estate (property, belongings and money), known as their 'executor' or 'administrator'
  • details of any public sector or armed forces pension schemes they were getting or paying into


Please note

  • Permission is required from the next of kin, the executor, the administrator and anyone who was claiming benefits or entitlements jointly with the person who died, before you give their details
  • There is no need to follow-up contact after you have used Tell Us Once unless you don't receive a confirmation from the relevant department after a reasonable period of time, in most cases a calendar month
  • Once the various agencies informed by Tell Us Once have received notification of the death, they will make any further contact if necessary with the bereaved family
  • Tell Us Once is not a claim to benefit, therefore please contact GOV.UK or the relevant department for advice
  • Tell Us Once does not notify any commercial organisations of the death and cannot arrange for redirection of post.