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National death data

We are the official source of Australian death data, providing access to:

As the appointed Australian Coordinating Registry (ACR), we have the approval of all Australian registries of births, deaths and marriages (RBDMs), the data custodians, to provide services for accessing these datasets to an approved agency or applicant on their behalf.

You can apply to get this information once only, or on a recurring basis.

If you only require data from a single state or territory, apply to:

If you are researching a family tree (or if you are a genealogist) and the event took place outside Queensland, contact the interstate or overseas registering authority. If the event took place in Queensland, you can search our historical records for free.

Fact of death (FOD)

Fact of death data is a compilation of death records from each of the data custodians. These files contain full name, date of birth and residential address details of all the people who have died in Australia.

Australian state, territory and federal government agencies are currently the only eligible applicants for FOD data.

Commercial organisations can access national death data through our new data cleansing service, the Australian Death Check.

Government subscription service

The purpose of the fact of death subscription service is to enable government agencies to cleanse their administrative databases. It can’t be used for research or statistical findings (a separate dataset exists for this).

We offer data files dating back to 1992.

Australian Death Check

The Australian Death Check (ADC) is the only official source of national death data available to commercial organisations.

As a joint initiative between the RBDMs, we can rapidly cleanse datasets by checking them against over 3 million up-to-date registry death records in minutes.

Commercial organisations and government agencies can match their data against the ADC service’s data to help verify a person’s identity and to keep customer information up to date.

This helps organisations meet privacy obligations and protect against identity fraud.

Find out more about the Australian Death Check.

Australian Death Notification Service

The Australian Death Notification Service, coordinated by the New South Wales RBDM, allows people to notify multiple organisations that someone has passed away.

The service checks details about a person who has passed away against the ADC.

Once matched, users can choose which organisations they want to notify and provide their own contact details for any next steps.

Learn more about the Australian Death Notification Service.

Cause of death unit record file (COD URF)

The cause of death unit record file is a snapshot of data that is compiled and coded (ICD-10) by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), based on data from the data custodians—it is correct as at a point in time. This data set is used for statistical and research purposes.

There are 3 versions of a year’s data files:

  • preliminary
  • revised
  • final.

Data files are available back to 2006 (final).

We will only release the most-recent version of the data that is available when you apply. So, once a data file reaches the final stage, we will only release the final version.

Cause of death information is used for:

  • population-based health research and policy development, monitoring or evaluation
  • investigating potential projects (i.e. testing hypotheses and pilot studies)
  • follow-up and comparison of different treatment regimes
  • the study of morbidities and outcomes of specific diseases.

The data available is coded to ICD-10, not ICD-10-AM.

Who can use this request

Only organisations and institutional or educational researchers can use this assessment request.

Agencies must meet the eligibility requirements for the relevant dataset, which will be assessed through our application process once we have considered your needs and the best product for you.

The applicant must:

  • apply strict protocols to ensure the confidentiality of the information
  • have appropriate data security measures
  • describe how the project or reason for accessing to the data is in the public interest

and

  • use de-identified data for their research (where possible).

Purpose of assessment

Submit this request form so we can determine your requirements. We will advise if you are eligible to receive one of the datasets, and what steps you need to follow from there.

So we can accurately assess your request, tell us specifically:

  • what information or data you require
  • how you plan to use it
  • why you need it.

The details you provide will help us direct you to the most suitable products or services.

Find out more before you submit a request.

Tell us your national death data needs

What happens next

We try to help all eligible requestors obtain data for their purposes while considering the requirements and access principles.

Before we send you an application, we will assess your request and talk to you about the options that are suitable for your purposes. This ensures that you complete the correct application process to comply with the legislative requirements governing the data.

After you submit this request, we’ll contact you within 10 business days to discuss how our products and services can help you and how much it will cost.

Your responsibilities

To access the data we hold, you must agree to:

  • use it for the public interest—for example, in research that benefits the community or to keep your administrative records up to date
  • manage the data in a way that protects people’s privacy.

Some requests may need ethics approval before you can access the data.

For more information

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