You do not have to wait to start death certificate process – death certificates are still being ordered and processed during this current pandemic
From the New York City Department of Health:
Due to COVID-19, funeral homes are experiencing higher than normal requests for burial arrangements. While families might be waiting longer to bury their loved ones during this pandemic, Funeral Directors and families do not have to wait to begin the death certificate process.
The City is making clearer to Funeral Directors and the public that death certificates can still be processed and delivered to funeral homes or families even if final arrangements have not been made. Death Certificates are available once the death has been reported and the case has been registered. This means if a decedent is being held in a morgue for longer than usual without a set burial or cremation date, a death certificate can still be ordered.
Today the City posted clear guidelines for the public, medical professionals, and Funeral Directors. This guidance is available on the Health Department's website. The City is also be providing DOHMH contact points for members of the public, medical community, or Funeral Director community who have questions about the death certificate process or concerns about delays. The public can call the Health Department at 347-396-7962, and funeral directors can contact the Burial Desk at 212-788-4545. Questions can also be answered via DOHMH chat or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Certificates can be ordered online