(1) A certificate for each death and fetal death which occurs in this state shall be filed on a form prescribed by the department with the 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 such registrar 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. If there is not sufficient space, aliases may be recorded on the back of the certificate and shall be considered part of the official record of death;
(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 shall file the certificate of death or fetal death. The person who files the certificate shall obtain personal data from the next of kin 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, 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 or fetal death 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 or fetal death 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 physician in charge of the decedent’s care for the illness or condition which resulted in death, the physician in attendance at the time of death or fetal death or immediately before or after such death or fetal death, or the medical examiner if the provisions of s. 382.011 apply. The 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. (a) The local registrar 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 physician or medical examiner has indicated 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 local registrar has granted 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 physician or medical examiner 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 which 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 medical examiner, 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.