Hello all! William and Matt especially. I know it's been a while, but I AM still alive as I recently was made aware that had come into question by at least one of you I guess for my not popping in here for quite a while now...

Ironically, this "being alive" theme ties into my question. My question has to do with bringing CREMATED ASHES into Brazil once I move there. Specifically, IS THERE A PROBLEM WITH DOING SO? When I move it will be only after my parents have both passed and they will be cremated and don't want to be buried here and I know I won't be able to bury them in Cuba (at least not without a LOT of red tape and travelling there and once they pass my ONLY thought will be to move to Brazil to finally be with my love and partner and soul mate.) SO, it suddenly occurred to me-- knowing that everything else if difficult with emigrating to Brazil-- to ask THIS "morbid but necessary question".

ALSO, even if they DO permit FOREIGN (Cuban-born American citizens) ashes to ENTER, will they ALSO permit BURYING of those ashes along with MINE once I pass away also??

Hi lacret60,

I've never really given the issue much thought and certainly it's not one that has ever come up on the forum before. I really don't know if there are any legal questions involved, but if you would like I will check with a local funeral service and find out exactly what needs to be done. I would think that provided that you have the Death Certificates, any necessary Medical Examiner's Authorization/Warrant for Cremation of your parents, there should be little problem bringing cremated remains into the country. Regarding burial here I don't think that would be a problem. I'll get back to you when I've got some information.



It's certainly not a topic that I've ever dealt with on the forum, nor one that I have much personal knowledge about.

I would presume that provided you have the Death Certificates and any Coroner's Warrant/Medical Examiner's Authorization for cremation which is usually required in most places there should be no problems. I will ask next time I pass the local funeral service here and see if I can get some answers to your questions. I'll get back to you once I have some information.


Yes William, please, and thank you in advance for looking into that ok?

I'll be VERY interested to know what you find out.


My biggest fear was dying in Brazil and my body trapped in bureaucracy only to have my parents deal with it.

Fortunately, I'm on an airplane right now returning to the US. :)

Hey Matt

Welcome back to the U.S. then...!!

My biggest fear (though I DO fear Brazilian bureaucracy, trust me!) is dying far from my Brazilian love. So, since she doesn't want to come here, I will follow my heart wherever she is. I already left my homeland of Cuba and even though I've got everything here, my love is in Brazil and that's what's most important to me.

But you didn't seem happy once you got there so if you're happy being back I'm happy for you, my friend.

Hi William

Any info yet?

Also wanted to know if sending the ashes via a Funeral Home HERE to a Funeral Home THERE would make a difference in making the whole process easier or faster. OR even sending the ashes directly from a Funeral Home HERE directly to a HOME address THERE.

Please advise.

Thanks as always.


Hi Dalia,

Nothing yet, but I will check this week. I'll ask about these particular points too.


Thank you Sir William  :thanks:

No real rush, but was just wondering. Thanks a bunch.


Hi Dalia,

The best information that I was able to obtain is as follows:

Bringing cremated remains into the country should be absolutely no problem for you, but requires authorization from the Consulado-Geral do Brasil in the country in which the transportation of the remains will originate. Not sure in your case if that’s going to be the USA or Cuba. You would need to present the original Death Certificate(s) of the deceased and probably a certified copy, since is quite likely that the Consulate would want to retain a copy for their records. With the consular authorization then you could take the cremated remains with you on your flight. I would presume that you could take them either as carry-on baggage or as checked baggage (check with the airline what they require). At airport security it would just be a matter of presenting the Death Certificate(s) and consular authrorization when going through the security check.

Once in Brazil the procedure depends on the ultimate disposition of those remains. If the intention is to have the remains buried or placed in a burial vault then they cannot be transported in a private vehicle on Brazilian soil. You would have to arrange for a funeral service provider to pick up the remains at the airport and transport them to the ultimate destination.

If it is your intention to keep the remains at home as some people do, then you MUST inform the Consulate of that when you request the authorization to bring them into the country. They will include this information in the authorization and in this case then you can transport the remains in a private vehicle to your residence; no outside assistance is required from a funeral service.

I do not know if it would be necessary to have the Death Certificates translated into Portuguese or not, so you may wish to contact the Consulate to enquire about that and about if they only require an affidavit from the translator about the accuracy or if they require a court sworn translator to transcribe the document in Portuguese. (Lots of bureaucracy in this country).

I hope this clears up your doubts about how to proceed.  If you have any further questions then please let me know.


Hey, AndKen, did you delete your post when you edited it on purpose or by mistake? Because if you deleted it on purpose, that's fine, but if it was by mistake, I'd be very interested in hearing any input you may have on this matter...

And, William, THANK YOU so much for your response!! It was VERY informative (why would I be surprised...??) and it honestly gave me information I hadn't even imagined.

Yes, my INITIAL plan would be to have my parents' remains in my and my partner's home with us, so, in that case, according to what you found out, I would be transporting it myself. And from the U.S. which is where I am and the remains will be til I move to Brazil. However as my plans may change in the future as to how to proceed, I'm very glad you investigated and detailed every scenario.

My only remaining question is this: If I do end up transporting the remains MYSELF to have in my home in Brazil, once I wish to BURY those remains, though--whether it be ALONG with MY OWN remains after I myself pass or BEFORE I myself pass away, there will not be any problem in doing so, then? In other words, would I and could I just merely make burial arrangements as one normally would otherwise in one had always lived and been corn in Brazil? I hope so and from what you already told me it's sounds like it to me, but let me know for sure, ok?

And by the way, getting back for a moment to my INITIAL post in this topic, I want you to know that I will FOREVER wear as a feather in my cap the fact that I actually STUMPED you, my friend...!  :) And, believe me, that is a compliment to YOU, in the end.


Hi Dalia,

Yes girl, you found my one weak spot. I guess that's because I too have never thought about kicking the bucket here so I've not done much checking into that side of the Brazilian bureaucracy before. I was not the least bit surprised by the fact that the bureaucrats don't even leave you alone after you've shuffled off this mortal coil, at least not here in Brazil. So now I've decided to start making my own plans because I sure don't want to leave all that hassle for my young wife and our son.

As far as the final disposition really there are few rules here in Brazil regarding cremated remains. They can be scattered almost anywhere. I've seen TV reports of people who've scattered ashes in the ocean, others in parks, on mountain tops, you name it they've done it here. I think actually if you intend to keep the remains at home you could even probably arrange with a funeral service here to have them placed in your own casket when the time comes. I'm sure all they'd care about is the pre-existing Death Certificates so they can prove that they're dealing with the remains of someone who had passed away many years before. Hopefully, you'll have a lot of years to check that out on your own.


Ha ha! Yes, I really would NEVER have probably thought of it either if my Dad had not already passed away, and one day contemplating his urn it suddenly occurred to me that there may be a BIG problem in even ENTERING those precious ashes into Brazil and it was at that time that a HORRIBLE sensation came over me when I thought I would NOT be able to take them in or bury them there, being they were not Brazilian citizens, you understand? After all, why WOULDN'T I fear that being that EVERYTHING ELSE seems to be a major problem or even impossible in Brazil, right...?! And since I doubt I'll be able to have them buried in Cuba, as is their ACTUAL wish, I at least then wanted them to be with ME, as I know that is also what they would want.

Major SNOWSTORM happening here right now (although with you being from Canada, maybe you yourself may not be at all impressed, ha ha), and I'm sitting here KNOWING I will NOT miss that once I'm, God willing, in Fortaleza. And once I AM, all I'll be thinking of will NOT death but LIVING with the love of my life, which is all that matters to me. Everything else is surmountable if you really are in love and are committed. No where in this wonderful world is perfect after all. There's plenty about the states I don't like nor have ever gotten used to, even though I've been here since I was 3. So even though this or that may be more convenient here than there, I also think a lot of getting used to something or not comes down to what you're ALREADY used to, and whether or not you can or are willing to let go of it or not and how important the REASON that you left your comfort zone and moved elsewhere in the FIRST place is and CONTINUES to be for you. So while I'm in NO way saying ti will be EASY,  and I'm not even saying there won't be times when I have my doubts before and even after I move, I'm just and STILL saying that, MY reasons (or rather REASON) being what is IS,  will at least be WORTH it all. After all, I always told her she was WORTH all the pain and the wait. As she has always said to me. And so far anyway we have always and without fail proven to the other it to be true.

I brought my father remains when I came in April of 2013. I didnt have any paperwork. At customs they just asked what it was, and never looked inside the box. You should have no problem

Thank you, Ravensfan!

That's actually INCREDIBLE that they required no paperwork and never even took a peak inside (which I've always wondered if they'd stoop that low). However, not only considering Brazil's seemingly INSATIABLE FETISH and APPETITE for paperwork, But ALSO considering that quite honestly ANYTHING could be transported in there, INCLUDING but not limited to, drugs, etcetera, it boggles my mind that they reacted in such a trusting and naive manner. Because of that, while I'm happy you had no problem, I wonder if it was just a fluke. And even though it may not have been, I think I'll feel better taking the Death Certificates as wjwoodward suggested etc.

But THANK YOU for sharing YOUR experience. Interesting indeed.

I am glad that this has been asked already.  I have not posted in these forums for some time.  I have recently returned to my native UK and while here, I am about to receive a small amount of brother's ashes. 

I am returning to Brazil at the end of this week and I do not have copies of the death certificate etc.  I was wondering what are the chances of just winging it and bringing them without any paperwork and getting away with it?

anything is possable, even going to Prison

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