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Exhumation of mortal remains or urn

Subject to certain conditions, mayors of Flemish municipalities may grant permission for the mortal remains or an urn containing the ashes of a deceased person to be exhumed from a grave with the intention of reinterring them at a different location or, in the case of mortal remains, of having them cremated. This permission may be granted only on serious grounds or by order of the judicial authorities. Mayors are free to define these serious grounds themselves.


The municipal councils themselves set the amount of the tax to be levied on the exhumation.


  • Government of Flanders Order of 2 December 2005 amending the Order of 14 May 2004 setting forth the organisation, design and management of cemeteries and crematoria (Belgian Official Gazette 11 January 2006)
  • Circular BA-2006/03 on the application of the Decree of 16 January 2004 on cemeteries and burial and cremation and the implementing orders (Belgian Official Gazette 7 April 2006)
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  • Last revision 15/11/2023
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