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Funeral Plans

Key priorities when somebody dies

Key priorities when somebody dies

Dealing with the loss of a loved one can be a devastating time. Unfortunately, there are many things to deal with following the death of a loved one. Here, we give you some ideas of what to think about in the initial days and months following the death of your loved one.

What should you do first?

The first step you need to make after a bereavement is to register the death. At present, you are able to do this over the telephone or in person by booking an appointment with your local registrar. Death certificates will then be given to you.

Many banks and other bodies will require sight of an original death certificate, so it’s important to have several copies of the certificate so that this whole process is made simpler.

Next, you should inform government bodies such as HMRC and the DWP. You should be able to use the ‘Tell Us Once’ service, which again makes this process easier and enables you to contact several government agencies at once.

At this point, you should check to see if the deceased made a Will. This is important, as some people include wishes for their funeral within their Will and other wishes to be carried out just after their death.

The final step at this stage is to arrange the funeral.

What Comes Next?

After you have arranged for the funeral, the estate can generally be managed using the following steps:

  1. You may need to apply for Probate. Some assets will require a Grant of Probate (or Letters of Administration where the deceased did not leave a Will) before they are able to close down accounts.

A common misconception is that you do not need to apply for a Grant of Probate if the deceased left a valid Will, but this is not always the case. Some banks and other institutions require a Grant of Probate too.

In particular, property require a Grant of Probate to sort the sale of the asset.

  1. Apply for a Grant of Probate. You can do this yourself, but it is best to get an expert to do this for you, as they will know what to ask for and the relevant channels to use.
  2. Gather together any assets and pay any debts or other liabilities. Once you have obtained the Grant of Probate, you will be able to sell or use them in order to pay out any debts before the estate is settled.
  3. Finally, you will be able to distribute the estate in accordance with the Will or in accordance with the rules of intestacy where there is no Will.

Complete Estate Protection are here for you, should you need support following a very difficult period in your life. If you need help in dealing with your loved one’s estate, please do not hesitate to contact us.