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Death in Hong Kong (Expat & Tourist Information)

British ConsulateIf someone has died while in Hong Kong then you will need to contact the British Consulate in Hong Kong for assistance. They do provide consular assistance for family members of those who had died. Below is a list of what they can and cannot do. There is also a list of undertakers and estimated cost of repatriation of the mortal remains.

How the British Consulate in Hong Kong can help you:

When someone has died abroad you may be uncertain about what to do next or who to contact for assistance and advice on what the process is. These notes below are simply designed to help you through the practical arrangements that you will need to make while in the country. The process is not going to be the same as it is in the united Kingdom.

What do they need:

The British Consulate in Hong Kong will require the following from you:

  • Full Name
  • Date of birth
  • Passport Number (Provide a copy of the passport if possible)
  • Details of next of kin (if not you)
  • Address of deceased

This is the basic information needed and this is where the ball starts rolling. You can also obtain a death certificate if the person died from natural causes however if the cause of death was unnatural then a ‘certificate of order authorising burial / cremation of body’ will be issued by the Coroner’s Court.

In Hong Kong an autopsy will not normally be carried out where the death resulted from natural causes. If however the death resulted from unnatural causes the case will then be referred to a coroner and an autopsy will occur. This investigation normally takes 6-12 months. Once the autopsy is done they will normally issue a “Certificate of Order Authorising Burial/Cremation of Body” and the body will be released for burial. The address of the Coroner Court is: – 10/F, Eastern Law Courts Building, 29 Tai On Street, Sai Wan Ho, Hong Kong. Tel: 2886 6870 and 2886 6871. Fax: (852) 2568 1735. The British Consulate will normally assist you with this process.

Mortuary Facilities

If the person died in hospital then the body will be held at the mortuary of the hospital. If however the person died at home or in public then the body will be taken to one of three public mortuaries in Hong Kong. These are listed below.

Victoria Public Mortuary

34 Victoria Road, Kennedy Town, Hong Kong

Tel: 2817 2026 / Fax 2818 4859

Kwai Chung Public Mortuary

100 Kwai Hei Street, Kwai Chung, NT, Hong Kong

Tel 2612 5810 / Fax: 2419 0709

Fu Shan Public Mortuary

10 Yau On Street, Shatin, NT, Hong Kong

Tel: 2606 9333 / Fax: 2691 1112

Repatriation and Burial

The next of kin or family and friends of the person who died in Hong Kong with written authorisation from the next of kin should arrange for the repatriation of the body through an international funeral director. This can be costly. Local burial or cremation in Honk Kong is possible and should be arranged with a local funeral parlour.

If you wish to have a cremation in Hong Kong then you should contact the Environmental Hygiene Department at the Cemeteries and Crematoria Office for permission. With the certificate of the fact of death as well as the certificate of cremation and the removal permit of the urn you can now get a funeral parlour to repatriate the ashes back to the UK if that is your wish.

Cost of a local funeral (inc. all charges undertaker’s fees, religious service, documents)
$28,000

Total cost of cremation and transportation of ashes back to the UK
$26,000 – 30,000

Cost of preparing and transporting a body to the UK (also depends on weight of body)
$50,000 – $55,000

 

List of Funeral Directors in Hong Kong

Universal Funeral Parlour

10 Cheong Hang Road, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong

Tel: 2362 4331 Fax: 2774 5546

Website: www.universalfuneralparlour.com.hk

Email: info@universalfuneral.com.hk

• they have English speaking staff • they have experience of representing British nationals

 

Hong Kong Funeral Home

679 King’s Road, North Point, Hong Kong

Tel: 2561 5226 (24 hour hotline) 2563 0241 Fax: 2811 4891

Website: www.hongkongfuneralhome.com

Email: info@hongkongfuneralhome.com

• they have English speaking staff • they have experience of representing British national

 

Kowloon Funeral Parlour

1A Maple Street, Tai Kok Tsui, Kowloon West, Hong Kong

Tel: 6996 2992 Fax: 2380 3314

Website: www.kowloonfuneral.hk

Email: info@kowloonfuneral.com

• they have English speaking staff

 

Registration of the death

The Hong Kong Government will issue you with a local death certificate citing the cause of death in the English language. Note that if there has been an autopsy on the body the local death certificate is likely to take 6-12 months. The Hong Kong death certificate will be accepted in the UK. If you wish to have a consular death certificate issued then you will need to call the enquiry line is +44 020 7008 0186 or email: – bmdenquiries@fco.gov.uk.

Passport cancellation of a deceased person

You will need to speak to the British Consulate in Hong Kong for assistance with this.

Return of Personal Effects

If the personal effects are valued at under  HK$5000 then this is normally handed over to the next of kin or their authorised representative. If it is over this value then you need to speak to a probate lawyer as it has to go via the probate Register of the High Court in Hong Kong. This can take from 3 to 9 months. See the list of law firms in Hong Kong for more information.

If you are a friend/colleague of the deceased in Hong Kong then you will need a Power of Attorney from the Next of Kin authorising you to deal with all the matters related to the deceased. The Next of Kin can obtain this from any UK solicitor office.

 

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