Losing a loved one causes enough pain and sorrow but if it's overseas too, this only adds stress and cost to the procedure.
22 July 2013| Last updated on 14 June 2017
The death of a family member or friend is difficult at any time, but the procedures in a foreign country may add to your stress and pain. Your national embassy will certainly assist wherever they can and will provide you with clear instructions of what needs to be done in order to remove remains for funeral arrangements.
The police must be notified in the event of a death, so that they can issue a report stating that there was no foul play involved. Once this report has been issued, you need to go to the mortuary (439 2594) to collect the Notification of Death certificate (a yellow form). Once you have these, you must go to the Preventative Health Department (located on Al Rayyan Road, near Lulu’s) to obtain further paperwork.
In order to obtain all the relevant paperwork, you will need the following:
10 copies of the deceased person’s passport
10 copies of the deceased person’s spouse’s passport
10 copies of the passport of the person handling the arrangements
Copies of each person’s ID card may also be required
The cost will be approximately QR 100
Post mortems are not usually performed in Qatar, or any of the other Gulf countries, unless there is reason to believe that the death was not due to natural causes or accidental. If a post mortem is necessary, a relative must sign a form, which is written in Arabic, and which states that you have no objection to any organs being removed and destroyed in non-criminal cases.
You will then need to go to the CID (the national security force in Qatar) with all the paperwork obtained from the Preventative Health Department in order to obtain a Transfer of Dead Body certificate. The CID is located in the same place where you normally go to have your fingerprints taken. You will need to purchase a QR 6 stamp and take it to the fifth floor.
Thereafter, you will need to return to the Preventative Health Department with all the paperwork and they will issue you with six sets of death certificates.
You must also register the death with the deceased person’s embassy. They will require a death certificate and a completed Registration of Death form; available at the embassy. As an indication of cost, at the British Embassy, registration of a death costs QR 484 and a death certificate costs QR 308.
The embassy will cancel the deceased person’s passport, which is necessary if the body is to be repatriated. The residence visa must also be cancelled, and the deceased person’s sponsor should arrange this for you.
You will then need to make arrangements with an airline for shipment of the body, as well as with an undertaker in the country to which the body is being flown. Remember to advise the mortuary on the flight details as soon as they have been booked. The mortuary will then make arrangements to transport the body to the airport.
The next step is to contact Qatar Aviation Services (4465 6652), which is located at the cargo section of the airport. They will require copies of the deceased’s passport and that of the accompanying person. They also need contact details of the undertaker in the home country. They will issue an airway bill for the body and will expect cash payment in advance.
There are no undertakers in Qatar. A woman named, Eugene, known locally as the embalmer will help with the preparation of the body. Eugene and a team of volunteers do not charge for their services, but will happily accept donations, which she then gives to local charities. Eugene will come and prepare the body 24 hours before it is due to leave the country. She can be contacted on 4442 7427.
You will need to order a coffin and this can be done through Gulf Timber (4460 0822); alternatively you can call Mr Cesar (541 4768) or for Arabic speakers, Mr Jaffer (551 0962/553 3145). It takes a maximum of two days to make a coffin once they have the measurements of the deceased. The approximate charge is QR 3,000, paid in advance, and they will deliver the coffin to the mortuary on the day the body is being flown home.
On the day of departure, you will have to take the paperwork, together with the deceased’s original cancelled passport and the airway bill, to the airport. At Arrivals, go to the Customs counter, where they will stamp one set of papers. Then go to Immigration who will stamp the deceased’s passport with an exit stamp. You will then have to return to QNT with all the stamped documents.