What to do When a Death Occurs

Knowing what to do when a death occurs is important. Furthermore, it is essential that the situation is handled in a logical and rational way

Initially, you must inform the local authority that a death has occurred, as soon as possible. After which, you are able to advise us that you require our services.

When a death occurs in hospital

If a death occurs in a hospital, the ward staff or bereavement office will assist with the issuing of a Death Certificate. This certificate will need to be taken to the appropriate Registrar’s Office for the death to be registered. The registrar will (in most cases) give you an Order for Burial or Cremation (sometimes called a green form), this will need to be brought to us as soon as possible so that we can begin the arrangements to transport the deceased to our funeral home, here at The Paddocks.

When a death occurs at home or in a nursing home

If a death occurs at home or in a nursing home, and you were prepared for the passing, you or the nursing home staff will need to inform a doctor immediately, unless a qualified nurse was present at the passing. The doctor (or qualified nurse) will attend and certify the death as soon as possible. Upon receiving the verification, you will need to contact us so that we can arrange transportation of the deceased to our funeral home here at The Paddocks. Usually within a day or so, the doctor will issue a death certificate. Once this has been issued you will then be able to register the death.

What happens in the case of a sudden or unexplained death?

If a death is sudden or unexpected, the emergency services will have normally already been called and be in attendance. Once the death has been confirmed the police will have to attend and will act as a liaison and advise when to contact us. In all cases of unexpected/sudden death, we are legally required to take the deceased to the designated hospital mortuary on behalf of HM Coroner.

What happens when HM Coroner is involved?

If a doctor cannot issue a death certificate, HM Coroner will become involved. Unfortunately, this can result in there being a short delay in obtaining the necessary paperwork. After an examination/investigation, the coroner will liaise with you regarding issuing the relevant documentation, and inform you when you can register the death. You will need to contact us when the coroner has spoken to you regarding their decision. We will provide advice and support throughout this process.

Registering a Death

Unless there are mitigating circumstances, UK law dictates that the death of a person must be registered with the local Registration Office in the district where the death occurred. The death should be registered within 5 days.

Once the death is registered, the registrar will issue a certificate to authorise burial or cremation (sometimes called a green form). We will need to receive this certificate as soon as possible so that any pending funeral arrangements can be finalised or instructions commenced.

Arranging the Funeral

Arrangements can begin prior to the completion of the registration but this is at your discretion and can be done at a mutually agreed time. If the deceased has a valid a pre-paid funeral plan, we will make the arrangements according to the plan and their wishes. If there is no pre-arranged funeral plan in place, we will arrange a consultation with one of our Funeral Directors to take instructions.