South African Government

Let's grow South Africa together

Advice to South Africans in the event of death abroad

The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) in collaboration with its diplomatic or consular missions abroad, provide logistical assistance and advice to the next-of-kin in the event of the death of a South African national abroad.

The assistance includes:

  • obtaining a permit for importing mortal remains from the Department of Health
  • placing family members into contact with reputable undertakers in the country where the death took place
  • obtaining quotes for the transportation of the mortal remains and/or cremation and/or local burial, if so requested by the next of kin
  • providing information on local conditions and procedures affecting the deceased. It should be borne in mind that the manner in which someone dies can affect how the local authorities handle the case.

If the deceased had travel insurance, contact the insurer first to establish whether the deceased is covered in case of death. The South African Government does not render any financial assistance pertaining to the death of South African nationals abroad.

Read more about the assistance given when a South African dies abroad. You can also contact the South African representative abroad or the Department of Health at telephone number 012 395 8000.