Author Topic: Is it common for DoBs shown on Death Certificates to be inaccurate?  (Read 1938 times)

Offline Elastik

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Is it common for DoBs shown on Death Certificates to be inaccurate?
« on: Wednesday 01 June 22 12:01 BST (UK) »
I've noticed in a few Death Certificates (DC) there is a discrepancy between the DoB given on the certificate and the DoB given on the individual's Birth Certificate (BC). There isn't usually a big difference.

I have a DC at the moment which agrees with the subject's BC on DoB in Day and Month but not Year. The BC makes her exactly 2 years older. Is this common? She died aged 49 & there was a post-mortem but no inquest. I imagine it may be impossible to find someone's BC after their death & it may not seem particularly important so personal recollection is relied on. Does this sound right?

Online Ayashi

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Re: Is it common for DoBs shown on Death Certificates to be inaccurate?
« Reply #1 on: Wednesday 01 June 22 12:09 BST (UK) »
Things like that happen, although you don't mention how recent this was. I'm sure in a few cases a while back the person themselves might not have been sure, much less whoever the informant was. Even more so if the informant wasn't a family member.

Online Girl Guide

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Re: Is it common for DoBs shown on Death Certificates to be inaccurate?
« Reply #2 on: Wednesday 01 June 22 12:10 BST (UK) »
With death certificates you will have accept that the informant may not have known the exact date of birth.  Particularly if the informant was not a family member.

Not unusual to find inaccuracies with birth dates.  Even a family member may not have been certain of the exact date of birth of their relative.
Ashford: Somerset, London
England: Devon, London, New Zealand
Holdway: Wiltshire
Hooper: Bristol, Somerset
Knowling: Devon, London
Southcott: Devon, China
Strong: Wiltshire
Watson: Cambridgeshire
White: Bristol
Windo - Gloucestershire, Somerset, Wiltshire

Offline casram

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Re: Is it common for DoBs shown on Death Certificates to be inaccurate?
« Reply #3 on: Wednesday 01 June 22 12:12 BST (UK) »
The information on a death certificate is only as good as the knowledge of the person registering the death.
My father was a year out when he gave my grandfather's dob when registering his death in 1970. My father himself died in hospital in 1988 and the death was registered by a member of staff who was 2 years out on his dob (Correct day and month). So not that uncommon.
Carolyn
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Offline Elastik

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Re: Is it common for DoBs shown on Death Certificates to be inaccurate?
« Reply #4 on: Wednesday 01 June 22 12:19 BST (UK) »
Sorry, I should have mentioned, the subject died in 1978, at home I think & the informant was her husband.

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Re: Is it common for DoBs shown on Death Certificates to be inaccurate?
« Reply #5 on: Wednesday 01 June 22 12:24 BST (UK) »
Even husbands may not know the exact date of birth of their wives.  Depends on whether the wife was truthful about her age.
Ashford: Somerset, London
England: Devon, London, New Zealand
Holdway: Wiltshire
Hooper: Bristol, Somerset
Knowling: Devon, London
Southcott: Devon, China
Strong: Wiltshire
Watson: Cambridgeshire
White: Bristol
Windo - Gloucestershire, Somerset, Wiltshire

Offline ALAMO2008

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Re: Is it common for DoBs shown on Death Certificates to be inaccurate?
« Reply #6 on: Wednesday 01 June 22 14:57 BST (UK) »
Totally Agree all above Opinions regarding Age of the Deceased
Researching you can not view the Past as a Record of the Truth 100% correct with our modern accuracy eyes.
You learn to be Flexible in Research
History is a Record of what people "Said" which may not be the Truth.
I have 4 Great Uncles their Birth Certificates
 show their Birth Date
 Months after the Priest recorded their Baptism in his Log
CHAPMAN ROBINSON McKAY O'MALLEY

Offline carol8353

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Re: Is it common for DoBs shown on Death Certificates to be inaccurate?
« Reply #7 on: Wednesday 01 June 22 16:13 BST (UK) »
I have a friend whose mum died 5 years ago,he gave the wrong DOB for her when registering the death. He was out by a few days,because he was upset at the time and not thinking straight.

Someone rang him to go in and correct it as it wasn't tying up with her pension records.
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Offline Maiden Stone

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Re: Is it common for DoBs shown on Death Certificates to be inaccurate?
« Reply #8 on: Wednesday 01 June 22 18:14 BST (UK) »
Totally Agree all above Opinions regarding Age of the Deceased
Researching you can not view the Past as a Record of the Truth 100% correct with our modern accuracy eyes.
You learn to be Flexible in Research
History is a Record of what people "Said" which may not be the Truth.
I have 4 Great Uncles their Birth Certificates
 show their Birth Date
 Months after the Priest recorded their Baptism in his Log

I agree.
Inaccuracies even more likely the further back you go in time. May also depend on where & how long after event it was recorded.
Ages on death registrations of 2 of my very old great-aunts in rural Ireland were wrong by around a decade. Son was informant for one, a cousin for another. I'm unsure how accurate ages of their siblings & parents were as corroborative evidence doesn't exist.
A will executor in England mixed up death dates of 2 relatives who died in 1822. 2 years had passed when he applied for probate. 2 young adult children of the executor also died in the intervening 2 years.
My eldest uncle was a year older on 1939 Register than he actually was.
Difference of a few days in dobs in baptism registers and birth registrations of my mother and a grandmother.
One of my brothers has 2 birthdates.   
Cowban