7 Steps To The Repatriation Of A Body

7 Steps To The Repatriation Of A Body

Death is a path that everyone will have to go through. Of course, everyone has their own conception of what death represents. For some, it is the beginning of a new life; for others, it is the end of the joy of living, but also the end of the daily suffering of life on earth.

Having a loved one die near us is already very painful. But to have a loved one die far away from us is even more difficult to conceive and bear, especially if the death occurred in another country or region.

What exactly is repatriation?


The repatriation of a body consists in bringing back a deceased person to the place where the cremation or burial will be organized. For a person who died abroad, we speak of international repatriation of the body. This consists of transferring the body of the deceased from the country where the death occurred to the country of origin. Repatriation can also be conventional. It involves taking a deceased person from a hospital or other location to his or her place of residence.

Procedures for repatriation abroad

Organizing a repatriation of a body abroad is not an easy thing at all. Indeed, it requires enormous costs financially, temporally, and emotionally. In order to ensure that your loved one’s remains are returned to their country of birth, several procedures must be followed. The choice to bring back the remains of a loved one from abroad is obviously optional.

1. Statement of death by a physician

The report consists of determining the cause(s) of death. The doctor must then issue a certificate of non-contagion and a death certificate.

2. Use of a funeral service

In both of the above cases, the intervention of a funeral agency is mandatory. For medical repatriation, the body will be transported in a specialized vehicle. For international repatriation, the body will be brought back by air, most of the time. Indeed, using an agency will allow you to easily face the mourning. It also deals with medical repatriation of all types.

The cost of the repatriation will depend entirely on your particular requirements, the destination, the services required and the mode of transport adopted.

3. Completion of administrative paperwork


The administrative formalities include the following:

    • Notifying the local authorities
    • Establishing a request for repatriation
    • Establishing the medical certificate of death, the certificate of non-contagion, and the certificate of non-pandemic
    • Requesting authorization to close the casket
    • Request authorization to transfer the body
    • Request a flight authorization

It is important to note that all of these procedures are carried out at the embassy, consulate, and competent authorities of the two countries concerned.

The paperwork related to death insurance is also part of the formalities to be respected in order to lighten the costs of repatriation if you are affiliated with it. Indeed, it is strongly recommended to contact insurance companies or financial companies such as the bank of the deceased.

4. Identification of the body

This step is mandatory and allows the deceased’s body to be identified visually. If visual identification of the body is not possible due to physical deterioration, it can be done through distinctive signs. Among these signs are tattoos, scars, or specific moles.

5. Burial

The body must be treated with conservation care before being buried. Burial consists of placing the body of the deceased in a coffin. The coffin must be hermetic, made of metal, and cold welded. The burial must be assisted by the local authorities.

The body will then be taken charge by the funeral home for repatriation. The body will then be taken to the airport in the presence of the police in the country.

6. Request for flight confirmation

All formalities related to the flight will be taken care of by the funeral agency.

7. Organization of the funeral in the country of origin


For the organization of the funeral, everyone is free to proceed according to his expectations and particular recommendations of the deceased during his lifetime.

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