Burial, Cremation and Repatriation

Information about how to organise a burial, cremation or repatriation in the Philippines; also details on donor cards and organ donation...

Burial

It is the responsibility of the nearest relative to inform the local undertaker about matters such as burial, cremation or repatriation.

Public and private cemeteries are available in all towns and cities. A five-year contract is entered into if the relative decides the burial is to take place in a public cemetery. Burial in a private cemetery involves purchase of land, which is more expensive.

The average cost of a simple burial is PHP 150,000.00. This includes all costs such as storage, rent of chapel, cemetery plot, transport and actual burial services.

It is important to take note that there is a limit on the size of coffins in the Philippines. Most coffins for foreign nationals are imported and more expensive.

Cremation

Crematoriums are located in Metro Manila and in major cities in the Philippines. A permit for cremation must be obtained from the City Health Office before the cremation can take place.

The average cost for basic cremation is PHP 60,000.00 including cost of casket, cremation process and urn.

Repatriation

Repatriation is the transfer or shipment of the deceased’s remains to another country. The Embassy may assist in the arrangement, but all costs must be paid by the nearest relative. This is generally expensive, because it involves air freight from Manila to the destination country, containment of remains, local handling costs and local permits.

The more practical option is the repatriation of cremated ashes.

  • Average cost for repatriation of cremated remains: PHP 100,000.00
  • Average cost for repatriation of the whole remains: PHP 500,000.00

Usual requirements for repatriation of cremated remains:

  1. Certified copy of death certificate (issued by local civil registrar at city/municipality where death occurred)
  2. Original passport of deceased (to be cancelled by the Consular Section)
  3. Municipal transfer permit (issued by local civil registrar at city/municipality where death occurred)
  4. Certificate confirming that cremated remains will be contained in a sealed urn in accordance with international standards (issued by undertaker)

Usual requirements for repatriation of whole remains:

  1. Certified copy of death certificate (issued by local civil registrar at city/municipality where death occurred)
  2. Original passport of deceased (to be cancelled by the Consular Section)
  3. Municipal transfer permit (issued by local civil registrar at city/municipality where death occurred)
  4. Quarantine permit (issued by the Bureau of Quarantine, located at 25th and A.C. Delgado Streets, Port Area, Manila (not applicable if remains are cremated)
  5. Fumigation certificate (stating that body will be contained in a hermetically-sealed container, in accordance with international standards, and protected by a fumigated wooden crate for shipment)

Possible additional requirements:

  1. Autopsy/post-mortem report (if the deceased died in mysterious circumstances or of a communicable disease)
  2. Hospital report
  3. Police report (in cases of violent death)

Euthanasia

Euthanasia or assisted suicide is illegal in the Philippines. Doctors assisting patients to die can be imprisoned and charged with malpractice under the current laws.

Donor Cards

Organ donation is legal in the Philippines through the organ donor card.

For brain-dead patients, these are the legal requirements before the organ transplant can take place:

  • Declaration of brain death by the patient’s neurologist, neurosurgeon or attending physician
  • Consent for donation from the next of kin in the absence of a donor card

To obtain more information, call or visit the office of The Human Organ Preservation Effort (HOPE), an outreach of the National Kidney and Transplant Institute, to talk to any of the transplant coordinators.

  • The Human Organ Preservation Effort (HOPE)
    At
    : 2/F Medical Arts Building Annex II, Quezon City