When someone dies, the last thing you want to think about is formalities and arrangements. But there are a number of steps that are required by law.
An important part of the grieving process is to be able to give your loved one the funeral that they would have wished for.
Most funeral directors will help you to take all the right steps to arrange a funeral that is fitting for your loved one.
Inform the family GP: In most cases, the family doctor provides and signs a death certificate, which will be required in order to register a death.
Register the Death: All deaths must be registered by law at a register office. In England and Wales this must be done within five days, while in Scotland the time limit is eight days.
You need to take as much information/documents relating to the deceased as possible to register the death, including:
Use this link to find your Register Office in England and Wales
Use this link to find your Register Office in Scotland
At the register office: Assuming that there is no post-mortem, the register office will supply you with a Certificate for Burial or Cremation and a Certificate of Registration of Death. If you require any duplicates of the death certificate, you can request this at the register office.
When someone dies, especially if they were close to you, you will be faced with so many emotions. Our guide will help you to make the right steps to arranging a funeral.
WHAT’S IN THE WILL?
It is recommended that you visit the deceased’s solicitor to check whether a will includes any instructions on funeral arrangements. Even if you were close to the deceased and you know what they had planned, you are advised to check what is written in the will.
These wishes are not mandatory but you may want to take them into account when arranging the funeral. The will also include information on the executor(s) who will subsequently administer the conduct of the estate.
The will may have details of a pre-paid funeral plan. If so, the funeral director they have appointed can carry out the funeral arrangements according to the plan.
Alternative arrangements can be made through a professional funeral directors, a council funeral or a community funeral.
These are some of the questions that a funeral directors will ask you so that they can help you to arrange the right service:
In many cases, the deceased will have left word or intimated verbally whether they preferred a burial or cremation. The choice is very personal and may be influenced by a family’s tradition or religion.
It might seem obvious but if the funeral is to be a burial, there will need to be a burial plot or space. It could be that a space has already been reserved, such as an existing family burial plot. (Check in the will for this information or ask close family members if you do not already have this information.)
If not, you may need to find and pay for a burial plot in a churchyard or cemetery. The cost of some plots where space is limited can be high. A cemetery burial will also require a memorial headstone, or a new inscription on an existing headstone.
Perhaps you might consider a woodland burial, which is available in many places in the UK.
A burial will usually be preceded by a funeral service in a local church or in a cemetery chapel.
It is possible to hold a service in a church before proceeding to the crematorium. Here, you can take advantage of another service in the crematorium building. The alternative is to simply hold the whole funeral at the crematorium.
Cremations usually cost less that a burial and the choice of service can be religious or non-religious.
You will also need to decide on the final resting place of the ashes. Many people choose to take away the ashes of their loved one in an urn and decide later on to scatter or bury them.
Once you have arranged the date and place of the funeral you can send out the invitations and consider placing a notice of details in the newspaper.
MORE FUNERAL PLANS
You funeral director is there to help and advise you through each and every step.
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