Cremation (Scotland) Regulations 2019: guidance

The Cremation (Scotland) Regulations 2019 provide a detailed framework for the provision of cremation services.


1. The Burial and Cremation (Scotland) Act 2016[1] (the 2016 Act) provides Scottish Ministers with the power to make regulations setting out how procedures for cremation are carried out in Scotland.  The 2016 Act provides the basic structure for cremation.  Regulations supplement this structure and provide a detailed framework for the provision of cremation services.  The Cremation (Scotland) Regulations 2019 update and supersede the Cremation (Scotland) Regulations 1935 and all subsequent amendment regulations.  This guidance is intended to help understanding of what the regulations do, what the legal requirements are and what is not permitted.  The numbers in brackets throughout the guidance are the corresponding regulation numbers.

Updates to the guidance (September 2019)

2. Updates on the following have been added:  

  • completion of the cremation application form, 
  • date and time of cremation and hold-over,
  • electronic transfer, 
  • Certificate of Registration of Death (Form 14)
  • order of priority in who can make the application, 
  • cross border cremation,
  • scattering and splitting ashes, 
  • hazards and 
  • joint cremation.

Updates to the guidance (August 2020)

3. Updates on the following have been added:  

  • electronic transfer of documents (para 56),
  • remote registration of death (para 62), and
  • hazards and micro pacemakers (para 63 – 69).

4. Up to date information about any temporary changes to cremation procedures and practices during the pandemic are not included in this guidance but can be found on our blog page at:   



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