When a loved one dies there are a lot of decisions to be made and official notifications to be done. All at a time when you are least able to think straight. If you have a friend or family member who can carry out these tasks with you it will make things a lot easier for you. Your Funeral Director will be happy to help and advise you of the immediate requirements. In addition you can find useful information on GOV.UK which will lead you through the process of registering a death, notifying appropriate government departments, dealing with benefits, pensions and taxes etc. and dealing with the estate and probate.
get a medical certificate
You will need to get a medical certificate immediately, unless there is a coroner’s inquest where the certificate is issued after this.
If the person died in hospital, the hospital will give this to you. If the person has died at home, you should call the person’s GP. The certificate is free of charge.
register the death
Within five days for England, Wales or Northern Ireland; within eight days for Scotland.
If there’s a coroner’s inquest (or procurator fiscal if in Scotland) registration is delayed until the inquest concludes.
In England and Wales you must notify the Register Office within 5 days. The cost is free but a certificate costs £11.
arrange the funeral
You can now arrange the funeral. Most people do this through a funeral director, but it’s also possible to arrange the funeral yourself. Decide on what type of ceremony you want and what type of Officiant. Religious Minister, Humanist or Celebrant. Find out more about this HERE.
notify government departments
- Passport Office to cancel their passport
- HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) for their taxes
- Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to stop their State Pension and benefits
- Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) to cancel their driving license, car tax and car registration documents
- Local council for their Council Tax, electoral register and other housing benefits
- Public sector or armed forces pension scheme for their pension
tell us once service
Use the ‘tell us once’ service to notify many government departments at the same time.
The ‘tell us once’ service is offered by most local authorities in England, Wales and Scotland, but not in Northern Ireland. Go to GOV.UK Website for more information. The service is free.
other organisations you need to notify
There may be other organisations that you need to notify, for example Private Landlord, Bank, Credit Cards, Loan Companies, Building Society, Solicitor, Insurance Companies, Private Pensions Companies, Car Insurance, Golf Club Membership etc. Make sure you get the help of a trusted friend or family member to avoid extra stress.
The Money Advice Service is also a useful source of information.
Sharon Gordon Celebrant Stourbridge
I am a Funeral Celebrant creating authentic Celebration of Life Ceremonies for loved ones. If you are recently bereaved and would like to talk to me about a ceremony for your loved one please do CONTACT ME here, I work in The Black Country, South B’ham, North Staffs, North Worcs, Warks.