Transportation of ashes and cremated remains
Embassy of the Russian Federation in the USA
Phone (consular questions): (202) 939-8914 | Emergency line : (202) 298‑5700
/Schedule work today: 9:00–18:00

Transportation of ashes and cremated remains

In accordance with Article 355 of the Customs Code of Customs Union, the Customs authorities demand the following documents:

  • Declaration in any form from the person accompanying a coffin or an urn;

  • Official Death Certificate issued by an authorized agency of the country of origin (Office of Vital Records). The certificate has to be certified by "Apostille" (issued by the Office of the Secretary of State);

  • Medical Certificate from Forensic Bureau certifying absence of contagious diseases occurred in for three months preceding the date of death.

  • Certificate of Encasement (certifying that container is sealed and contains no extraneous objects) or any official document from funeral home stating that there are no alien enclosures in the casket and that the casket contains the body of the deceased person only. The list of personal belongings of a deceased should be attached in case they are transported along with the casket. This document should be also signed and sealed by officials.

All documents not in Russian must be accompanied by a certified translation.
The Consulate advises the family or friends to double check this information with local custom authorities at the airport of the entrance.

Please note. The documents in English should be accompanied by a Russian language translation.

If you want to certify the accuracy of the translation at the Russian Embassy, you should translate these documents into Russian and mailed it to the Russian Embassy for verification. Consul verifies the translation and attaches together the Apostille, the original document, and the translation in a way that is acceptable in the Russian Federation.

The consular fee is collected in the form of a money order payable to Russian Embassy in the amount of $45 per page.

If you apply by mail, you should enclose a copy of a passport of the diseased person, self-addressed stamped return envelope or prepaid waybill, bearing your account number and showing yourself as both shipper and recipient regardless of delivery address.

We do not accept waybills marked “bill sender”, “bill third party”, “bill credit card” or C.O.D. When forwarding your documents to us, please, specify “Attention: Legal Desk”.

Consular Division of the Russian Embassy
2641 Tunlaw Road, N.W.,
Washington, D.C. 20007

If you have any questions please write us an email to

We would also recommend getting a Free From Infection Certificate (document from Health Authority advising that the death was not due to any communicable disease and the remains are free of contagious microorganisms). This document could be necessary for US Customs.