2018 Florida Statutes
Death, fetal death, and nonviable birth registration.
Death, fetal death, and nonviable birth registration.
382.008 Death, fetal death, and nonviable birth registration.—
(1) A certificate for each death and fetal death which occurs in this state shall be filed electronically on the department electronic death registration system or on a form prescribed by the department with the department or local registrar of the district in which the death occurred within 5 days after such death and prior to final disposition, and shall be registered by the department if it has been completed and filed in accordance with this chapter or adopted rules. The certificate shall include the decedent’s social security number, if available. In addition, each certificate of death or fetal death:
(a) If requested by the informant, shall include aliases or “also known as” (AKA) names of a decedent in addition to the decedent’s name of record. Aliases shall be entered on the face of the death certificate in the space provided for name if there is sufficient space;
(b) If the place of death is unknown, shall be registered in the registration district in which the dead body or fetus is found within 5 days after such occurrence; and
(c) If death occurs in a moving conveyance, shall be registered in the registration district in which the dead body was first removed from such conveyance.
(2)(a) The funeral director who first assumes custody of a dead body or fetus shall file the certificate of death or fetal death. In the absence of the funeral director, the physician or other person in attendance at or after the death or the district medical examiner of the county in which the death occurred or the body was found shall file the certificate of death or fetal death. The person who files the certificate shall obtain personal data from a legally authorized person as described in s. 497.005 or the best qualified person or source available. The medical certification of cause of death shall be furnished to the funeral director, either in person or via certified mail or electronic transfer, by the physician or medical examiner responsible for furnishing such information. For fetal deaths, the physician, midwife, or hospital administrator shall provide any medical or health information to the funeral director within 72 hours after expulsion or extraction.
(b) The State Registrar may receive electronically a certificate of death, fetal death, or nonviable birth which is required to be filed with the registrar under this chapter through facsimile or other electronic transfer for the purpose of filing the certificate. The receipt of a certificate of death, fetal death, or nonviable birth by electronic transfer constitutes delivery to the State Registrar as required by law.
(3) Within 72 hours after receipt of a death or fetal death certificate from the funeral director, the medical certification of cause of death shall be completed and made available to the funeral director by the decedent’s primary or attending physician or, if s. 382.011 applies, the district medical examiner of the county in which the death occurred or the body was found. The primary or attending physician or medical examiner shall certify over his or her signature the cause of death to the best of his or her knowledge and belief. As used in this section, the term “primary or attending physician” means a physician who treated the decedent through examination, medical advice, or medication during the 12 months preceding the date of death.
(a) The department may grant the funeral director an extension of time upon a good and sufficient showing of any of the following conditions:
1. An autopsy is pending.
2. Toxicology, laboratory, or other diagnostic reports have not been completed.
3. The identity of the decedent is unknown and further investigation or identification is required.
(b) If the decedent’s primary or attending physician or district medical examiner of the county in which the death occurred or the body was found indicates that he or she will sign and complete the medical certification of cause of death but will not be available until after the 5-day registration deadline, the local registrar may grant an extension of 5 days. If a further extension is required, the funeral director must provide written justification to the registrar.
(4) If the department or local registrar grants an extension of time to provide the medical certification of cause of death, the funeral director shall file a temporary certificate of death or fetal death which shall contain all available information, including the fact that the cause of death is pending. The decedent’s primary or attending physician or the district medical examiner of the county in which the death occurred or the body was found shall provide an estimated date for completion of the permanent certificate.
(5) A permanent certificate of death or fetal death, containing the cause of death and any other information that was previously unavailable, shall be registered as a replacement for the temporary certificate. The permanent certificate may also include corrected information if the items being corrected are noted on the back of the certificate and dated and signed by the funeral director, physician, or district medical examiner of the county in which the death occurred or the body was found, as appropriate.
(6) The original certificate of death or fetal death shall contain all the information required by the department for legal, social, and health research purposes. All information relating to cause of death in all death and fetal death records and the parentage, marital status, and medical information included in all fetal death records of this state are confidential and exempt from the provisions of s. 119.07(1), except for health research purposes as approved by the department; nor may copies of the same be issued except as provided in s. 382.025.
(7) Upon the request of a parent of a nonviable birth, a health care practitioner licensed pursuant to chapter 464 or chapter 467 who attends or diagnoses a nonviable birth, or a health care facility licensed pursuant to chapter 383 or chapter 395 at which a nonviable birth occurs, shall electronically file a registration of nonviable birth on the department electronic death registration system or on a form prescribed by the department with the department or local registrar of the district in which the nonviable birth occurred within 30 days after receipt of such request. The certificate of nonviable birth shall be registered with the department if it has been completed and filed in accordance with this chapter or adopted rules.
(8)(a) The original nonviable birth certificate shall contain all of the information required by the department for legal, social, and health research purposes. The department may issue a certified copy of an original nonviable birth certificate which includes the confidential and exempt information:
1. To the fetus’ parent;
2. To any local, state, or federal agency for official purposes upon approval by the department; or
3. Upon the order of any court of competent jurisdiction.
(b) All information relating to the cause of death and parentage of a nonviable fetus, the marital status of such fetus’ parent, and any medical information included in nonviable birth records held by a state agency is confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State Constitution, but may be released for health research purposes as approved by the department.
(c) The department shall authorize the issuance of a certified copy of all or part of an original nonviable birth certificate, excluding any information that is confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State Constitution, to any person requesting such copy, pursuant to paragraph (b), upon receipt of a request and payment of the fee prescribed in s. 382.0255.
(d) This subsection is subject to the Open Government Review Act in accordance with s. 119.15, and shall stand repealed on October 2, 2022, unless reviewed and saved from repeal through reenactment by the Legislature.
History.—s. 1, ch. 67-312; ss. 19, 35, ch. 69-106; ss. 102, 103, ch. 77-147; s. 1, ch. 78-9; s. 7, ch. 87-387; s. 3, ch. 90-347; s. 2, ch. 93-42; s. 665, ch. 95-148; s. 189, ch. 96-406; s. 42, ch. 97-170; s. 93, ch. 97-237; s. 18, ch. 98-397; s. 16, ch. 99-397; s. 3, ch. 2006-118; s. 3, ch. 2013-138; s. 5, ch. 2015-105; s. 3, ch. 2017-38; s. 1, ch. 2017-39.
Note.—Consolidation of former ss. 382.081, 382.091.