When a friend or loved one passes away, it is an emotional time and knowing what to do ‘next’ can feel overwhelming.
There will be people who need to be informed; family, friends, work-colleagues. Often, it is very difficult to know just how many people would like to (and whom your loved one would’ve wanted) be informed…
Local councils (Council Tax), or a landlord, government departments such as cancelling passports and/or driving license; their state pension; these are things that will need to be considered.
There is a great service known as Tell Us Once. This notifies multiple departments all at once and is offered by most local authorities in England, Wales and Scotland, but not in Northern Ireland.
If the Tell Us Once service is not offered by your local authority, then you’ll need to notify these departments individually
We will try to provide a simple checklist for you follow in the immediate days, weeks and months after.
You will firstly need a medical certificate, and this should happen immediately, unless there is a coroner’s inquest. If a person passes away in hospital, they will provide you with the medical certificate.
Alternatively, if a person passes away at home, you will need to make a call to their GP. If you don’t know the GP, calling the Doctors Surgery should suffice and they can help you.
The medical certificate is free of any costs.
Registering the Death & Death Certificates
Now you will need to register the persons death. There are no costs associated with registering a death, however, you will have to pay to obtain a death certificate(s). A death certificate is important (and will be required at times) when dealing with organisations, such as finances, policies, pensions etc.
A death certificate costs £4 per copy in England and Wales and £8 in Northern Ireland.
You can obtain more than one death certificate, which will help you deal with multiple organisations at once; rather than waiting for them to return the original each time. It is also worth noting that if require more copies at a later date, the charge does increase.
Depending on which country the person lived in, you must register the death at:
In England and Wales – the Register Office
In Northern Ireland – the District Registration Office
In Scotland – the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages
If you are in England, Wales or Northern Ireland, this will need to be done within five days. Scotland is within eight days. This time is subject to no coroner’s request, where there would of course be a delay until the inquest is concluded.
You will need to have the following information with you:
- The medical certificate (cause of death)
- Full name including any previous names (maiden name)
- Date and place of birth (birth certificate if you have it is useful)
- The deceased persons last address
- Their occupation
- Information on their spouse or civil partner if they were married (including the full name, date of birth and occupation)
- Your I.D to show who you are (passport or driving license for example)
Now you have registered the death a funeral can be arranged to remember and celebrate a person’s passing.
There are various options when it comes to funerals. Many people go through a Funeral Director; however, this is something you can also arrange yourself.
Your loved one will likely have had funeral wishes; if even something simple like flower choice or music.
We have met many people over the years who had loved ones or family members who had detailed such wishes in a Will. However, the family had read the Will after a funeral had been arranged and were saddened to learn (in many cases) they had not upheld their loved ones wishes.
This was why we developed My Last Request. A simple subscription allows a person to detail their exact funeral wishes, store important information such as people and organisations which will need (and they wish) to be notified when they pass, where their Will is kept and to also safely upload and store any precious photos or video messages; plus much more.
Changes can be made throughout the subscription, as many times as they wish, free of charge.
A My Last Request subscription allows you to appoint two people who can access this information in the event of your death. They won’t be able to change any of your requests, but you can change the people you wish to ‘appoint’ at any time, as many times as you wish, too. This will ensure peace of mind for later life.
We have written various blog articles which you may be interested to read in relation to funerals: