What to do when someone dies?


What to do when someone dies?

 You may be unprepared or simply in shock so here is a guide as to what you need to do:

When someone dies at home:

  1. Call the deceased’s GP
  2. The GP will issue a Medical Certificate of Death.
  3. Once the GP has been informed instruct an undertaker service who will arrange to come after the GP;
  4. Make funeral arrangements – your undertaker will help you;
  5. If the deceased wished a religious ceremony Inform your vicar who will also help plan a service;
  6. Register the death – see our guide as to how to register a death;
  7. Instruct a solicitor to obtain probate and deal with any important legal issues e.g. transferring title to the house; pension payments; bank accounts; inheritance tax;  etc. Do not be tempted to sign up for a probate advice service offered by a bank, insurance company or funeral undertaker as these tend to be considerably more expensive than simply instructing a solicitor yourself. Often they will offer a free interview or advice over the telephone over general issues (such as explaining the steps above) as a pretext to geting you to to sign up for  an expensive probate service. This can often cost thousands of pounds as their charges tend to be on an hourly rate or percentage rather than for a fixed fee where the cost is clear at the outset; or for a much higher fixed fee than you could negotiate direct with a solicitor. We offer a fixed fee service that is much cheaper than ones offered by these organisations . If you find a cheaper fixed fee we will agree to beat it.  It is a difficult time but that is no reason to let someone exploit you ! If funds are available, these fees can be taken from the Estate, meaning that you will not need to bear the costs out of your own funds.

When someone dies in hospital:

  1. hospital staff will arrange for a doctor to issue the Medical Certificate of Death,
  2. Collect along any belongings, from the hospital.
  3. As per 4 et seq above.

When someone dies unexpectedly:

  1. the Coroner always investigates to establish the cause of death
  2. The deceased GP or , the emergency doctor, or police will inform the Coroner
  3. We can advise on the procedures involved and liaise with the Coroner.

When someone dies away from home or abroad – contact an undertaker who can make all the necessary arrangements.

For more on probate click on the drop down or revisit derby probate solicitors.