What do you do when someone close you to you dies? by Sangeeta Moore - The Law House Family Law Solicitors, London & Peterborough


What do you do when someone close you to you dies? by Sangeeta Moore

By in All Blogs, Wills, Trusts & Probate Category on March 16th, 2015

The death of a family member or close relative is a painful and personal experience. It is an experience which most of us will have to deal with once in our lifetime. It also is an experience which impacts upon us in many ways, especially emotionally, psychologically and financially. Irrespective of how affected we are, there are things that we have to do following a death.

If you are facing such an event in your life, the first thing you need to do is to obtain a medical death certificate from a hospital doctor or GP. This is a document which confirms the date, time and cause of death. You will need to use this medical certificate to register the death at the Register Office within the first five days of the death. Upon registration you will be given a death certificate, which is a copy of the entry made in the death register. It is sensible for you to obtain several copies of the death certificate as you will need to produce a copy to the various organisations and financial institutions when dealing with the deceased’s affairs. The Registrar will also give you a separate certificate for you to give to the funeral director. This certificate will allow the cremation or burial to take place. In addition you will be given a form to be sent to the Department of Works and Pensions so that the deceased’s pensions and benefits can be dealt with.

The information that you will need to take to the registrar of deaths is full name, maiden name ( if female), occupation, marital status and spouses name. It is worth making a list before you go the registrars.

The next step is for you to make arrangements for the funeral. You can make these all by yourself, or you can use the services of a funeral director. Funeral costs vary so it is worth contacting more than one funeral director. Expenses such as crematorium or cemetary fees, the local authority burial or cremation fees and the costs for placing an announcement of the death in the newspaper have to be met outright. If you are using the services of a funeral director you will need to factor in their fee for arranging and organising the funeral.

If you are arranging the funeral you will be responsible for paying the funeral bill. It is important that you find out where the money will come from to cover these costs. Maybe the deceased had a pre-paid funeral plan, in which case the whole cost of the funeral will be covered by the plan. Where there is no such arrangements, the costs of the funeral is usually paid from any monies the deceased had, such as their frozen bank accounts, or any insurance policy they had which provided cover for funeral costs. In the event there are no such arrangements, you may have to borrow the money to pay these costs until the deceased’s estate is sorted out.

If you are dealing with the death of a loved one and need advice on the best way to proceed at such an emotional, please contact me Sangeeta Moore on 020 8899 6620 or 07825 838 922. Alternatively you can e-mail me at smoore@thelawhouse.com I make home visits at no extra costs.