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Burial and Cremation (Scotland) Act 2016

Section 74 – Arrangements on still-birth

195.This section applies in respect of the arrangements to be made for burial or cremation following a still-birth (other than as a result of a post-24 week termination) and it appears to the health body that no other arrangements have been or are being made by virtue of section 72(2).

196.By virtue of subsection (2), the nearest relative of the still-born child may make arrangements for the disposal of the remains. Subsection (3) sets out a list of nearest relatives and the order of priority. The nearest relative is firstly the parent of the stillborn child. If neither parent is able (or wishes) to make a decision about the disposal the right then moves to the next nearest relative on the list. This process continues until someone exercises the right. As well as making the arrangements themselves, subsection (4)(a) enables the person making the decision to authorise the health body to make the arrangements in a manner chosen by the person or chosen by the health body. Subsection (4)(b) clarifies that the person making the decision is not permitted to authorise any other person to make arrangements.

197.Subsection (5) requires the health body to inform the nearest relative if a method of disposal they specify cannot be provided. Subsection (6) requires the health body to record information prescribed by the Scottish Ministers by regulations in relation to section 74. Subsections (7) to (9) set out the order of priority of nearest relative and make clear those who will be discounted, for example, if they are under 16 years of age. Subsection (10) provides definitions for the purposes of this section.

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