Exhumation means "any disturbance" of buried human remains.
The need to exhume is not a common however, bodies may be exhumed for many reasons, including the lack of burial space, redevelopment of old cemeteries or crypts; archaeological reasons; individual requests for reburial, repatriation or cremation; criminal investigations or even to correct errors made i.e. person was buried in the wrong plot.
When exhumation is required it must be done with dignity and respect and with all of the necessary legal licences and documentation. It is unlawful to disturb any human remains (including cremated remains) without permission.
More information on exhumations.
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