Helping you understand your next steps - a guide from our trusted partner Kings Court Trust

What to do when someone dies

When someone close to you dies, it can be difficult working out what to do and in what order. Following a bereavement, there are a number of tasks to be considered and completed which can make this already difficult time even more stressful. We appreciate there’s a lot to take on board, which is why Kings Court Trust put it all in one place in this free guide.

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Estate administration

We've broken it down into seven stages:

So, what needs to take place after someone dies?

Getting a medical certificate

Registering the death

When a coroner is involved

Dealing with the Will

Locating important papers

Arranging the funeral

Previews from the guide...

What the registrar will give you

Death certificate

This proves that the death has been registered. It has to be purchased and the cost varies according to the local authority. We recommend you buy several copies, perhaps one for each bank where the person held accounts, and each pension or insurance policy. Extra certificates are more expensive to purchase at a later stage and photocopies of are not usually accepted.

Certificate for burial or cremation

This is often called the ‘green form’ and it must be given to the Funeral Director before the funeral can take place.

Certificate of registration of death

This is often called the ‘white form’. You’ll be given one of these if the Deceased was entitled to a state pension or benefits. Complete the details and send it to the address on the reverse of the form.

Paying for the funeral

You may be able to access funds from the Deceased’s bank account to pay for the funeral directly.

However, this is not always possible, in which case any reasonable expenses you incur will need to be reimbursed to you from the estate at a later date.

If the Deceased’s estate does not have sufficient money in it to pay for the funeral, financial help may be available. You’ll need to contact your local Social Security Office for further information. You should also be aware that deadlines for applying for assistance may apply.