A certified copy of a death certificate is a legal document with a raised seal that proves a death has occurred. It contains confidential information about the deceased and is required to process life insurance claims, transfer property, appoint administrators/executors and close out retirement and bank accounts. In some circumstances, a photocopy of the death certificate is sufficient instead of a certified copy.
When you meet with a funeral director, the funeral director will collect the information needed to complete the death certificate. The funeral director will contact the doctor to arrange to have the physician sign and list the manner and cause of death. The funeral director is responsible for filing the death certificate in the local city, village or town where the death occurred and has to accomplish this within 72 hours from the time of death.
In Central New York, certified copies range in price from $10 to $30 per copy.
Additional certified copies of the death certificate can be obtained by your funeral director or by going to the local clerk's office in which the death occurred.