Transport of Human Remains
Transport of Cremated Remains
Germany has very strict laws on how to handle human remains. As a general rule, all coffins and urns have to be buried in specially licensed graveyards. Private persons are not allowed to have urns in their possession. Therefore, any transport in Germany has to be handled by a licensed funeral home. Coffins and urns are to be shipped by the US funeral home to a funeral home in Germany directly. Please clarify with the carrier what type of coffin is acceptable to them for transportation. No customs duties are charged for importing a coffin/an urn which contains the remains of a deceased person into Germany.
A Certificate for shipping cremains may be needed to send an urn to Germany. Please have the need for such a certificate verified with your airline and receiving funeral home in Germany.
In case you want to ship a metal urn, please verify with the carrier if this is acceptable for shipment as the screening might cause problems.
The certificate is issued by the locally competent Embassy or Consulate General. Please use the Consulate Finder-Link to find the mission competent for you.
The following documents have to be submitted (original or certified copies):
- Certificate of death
- Certificate of cremation with a confirmation from the funeral home that the urn contains the ashes of the deceased person (urn should be sealed and numbered)
if available, copy of the passport of the deceased person
- Fee: 20,- €, the equivalent to be paid in US-$in cash or by money order only (personal or company checks cannot be accepted; credit cards only if credit card holder applies for the certificate in person)- a self addressed prepaid USPS certified mail envelope or the shipping fee: 18,- USD (can be included in the money order mentioned above) for sending the certificate and original documents back
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