When a person dies away from her country of origin, relatives can request the repatriation of her body or ashes. It consists of the transfer through the relevant permits granted by the authorities of the country where the event occurred.

The repatriation will depend on the rules and laws of the country from which the remains or the body will be returned. Normally, the procedures are performed before the consulate of that country.

The documentation required for the repatriation of a corpse may include a certified copy of the death issued by the authorities. This  must be legalized by the consulate. They can also demand the embalming certification as well as the exit authorization or transit document. If necessary, the documents had to be translated into the required language. The documents must show the address of the funeral home that will receive the body in a properly sealed metal coffin.

In the case of ash repatriation, the death certificate issued by the authorities and legalized in the corresponding consulate is also normally required. The cremation and transit certificates duly legalized and translated should be required. The transfer of the ashes is done in a sealed container that is then placed in a solid box for the transfer to its destination.

It is possible that the authorities of the country where the relative has died request an autopsy of the body. Other requirements may include an order from a court to carry out the procedures. Repatriation can take an average of 48 hours, but this varies according to the laws of each country.

In any case, the relatives interested in the repatriation must obtain information about the procedure before the consulate of the country where the person died to carry out the collection of the pertinent documents.