Helping Families and Friends Honor Their Loved One

Procedure to be followed after a death

The procedure to follow after a death will depend on the circumstances surrounding the death. A Medical Certificate of the Cause of Death must be obtained from a doctor. This Certificate will enable you to register the death and obtain the necessary documents for the funeral arrangements.

When the death occurs at home

Inform the family Doctor as soon as possible that the death has occurred. He or she may write out the Medical Certificate of the Cause of Death upon visiting the home, or request you to attend the surgery for this purpose. Once the Doctor or other professional has certified the death the deceased maybe transferred to the Funeral Directors.

When the death occurs in a hospice or nursing home

The staff in the hospice or nursing home will inform you of the death and will advise you where to obtain the Medical Certificate of the Cause of Death. Once the Doctor or other professional has certified the death the deceased maybe transferred to the Funeral Directors.

When the death occurs in hospital

The Hospital staff will informs the next of kin or named person of the death. The deceased will normally be transferred to the hospital chapel/mortuary. The Hospital General or Bereavement Office will arrange for the Medical Certificate of the Cause of Death to be issued and at Victoria Hospital Blackpool make you an appointment at the Registrars which is located within the Hospital.

When the death is referred to the coroner

Sometimes the coroner will need to be informed when the Doctor cannot issue the Medical Certificate of the Cause of Death. In these circumstances the Coroners Office will arrange for a post mortem to ascertain the cause of death. Once this has been carried out the certificate will be sent to local registrars where the death can be registered and a certificate issued to the funeral directors to allow the funeral to take place.

Registering a death

Who may register?

If the person has passed away in a house, care home or hospital the death can be registered by:

  • The next of kin.
  • A close relative.
  • Someone present at the time of death.
  • An official from the hospital or Matron of the Care Home.
  • The person making the arrangements with the funeral director.

Registering by declaration

If the next of kin does not live locally, the death can be registered by Declaration at their closest Registrars Office.

Most deaths are registered by a relative. The registrar would normally allow other people to register if there are no relatives available.

Documents and information you will need

Documents

When registering a death you will need to take the following:

  • Medical Certificate of the Cause of Death (signed by a doctor).

And if available:

  • Birth certificate.
  • NHS medical card.
  • Marriage / civil partnership certificates.

Stillbirth

A stillbirth normally needs to be registered within 42 days and at latest within 3 months. In many cases this can be done either at the hospital or at the local register office.

Information

You’ll need to tell the registrar:

  • The person’s full name at time of death.
  • Any names previously used, including maiden surnames.
  • The person’s date and place of birth (town and county if born in the UK and country if born abroad).
  • Their last address.
  • Their occupation.
  • The full name, date of birth and occupation of surviving spouse or civil partner.
  • Whether they where receiving a state pension or any other state benefit.

Documents you will receive

If a post-mortem is not being held, the registrar will issue you with:

  • A certificate for burial or cremation (called the “green form”), giving permission for the body to be buried or cremated.
  • You will be able to purchase one or more Copy Death Certificates at this time; these will be needed by the executor or administrator when sorting out the personal affairs.
  • The registrar will also give you a booklet called “What to do after a death.” This offers advice on probate and other administrative issues that will need to be carried out around this time.
  • A certificate of registration of death (Form BD8) issued for Department of Work and Pensions purposes if the person received a state pension or benefits (please read the information on the back, complete and return it, if it applies).
  • A Bereavement Registration Form.

If a post mortem is being held to determine the cause of death, and the deceased is to be cremated the Coroner will issue:

  • Form Cremation 6 Certificate of Coroner

Other things that need to be done

  • Start the procedure with the selected funeral director.
  • Make sure everyone who needs to know is told.
  • Arrange to see the deceased’s solicitor and read the will as soon as possible, this will indicate if there are any special funeral requests and who are the nominated executor’s.
  • Collect all the information and documents you will need.

Useful telephone numbers

Victoria Hospital Blackpool Bereavement Office: 01253 303723
Blackpool Registrars: 01253 477177
Fylde and Wyre Registrars 0845 0530021
Age Concern: 01253 622812
Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB): 01253 308400
CRUSE Bereavement Care: 01772 686668

Arranging the funeral

We operate a 24 hours a day 365 days a year personal service.

Our service to you starts as soon as contact is made by yourself, either by telephone or calling personally into one of our funeral branches.

If the deceased died at home, a hospice or nursing home we recommend the conveyance of the deceased to our private chapel. In some cases the coroner will be required to convey the deceased to coroner’s hospital chapel.

At a time to suit yourself the funeral director will either in your home or at our offices discuss all the options available in order to fulfil your personal needs and requirements for the funeral arrangements. A courtesy vehicle with a driver is available if you need assistance with registering the death at the registrar’s office.

We will take care, on your behalf of all the necessary paperwork, liaise with doctors, hospitals, clergy, crematoria or cemeteries newspapers and caterers as appropriate.

Once we have taken your instructions and you have arranged the Funeral, a letter of confirmation will be given to you so the details maybe be checked and agreed.

Professional fees and Disbursements

Being members of the National Association of Funeral Directors, when arranging the funeral we provide a written estimate of professional fees and charges which will be agreed and signed so you are fully aware of the commitments to which you have agreed to in arranging the funeral.

The funeral estimate and account will be divided into two separate sections, Professional Fees and Disbursements.

Professional fees

Professional fees are the charges under the control of the Funeral Director. These include Funeral Directors attendance to all arrangements, including the completion of the necessary documentation, delivery of same by hand, phone calls, visits to home and personal supervision of the funeral, the provision of a Hearse, a coffin suitable for either cremation or burial. The conveyance of the deceased to our chapel of repose, full preparation and hygienic treatment.

Disbursements

Disbursements are the charges paid out by the Funeral Director on behalf of the family while arranging the funeral.

Examples of these are:

  • Cemetery fees.
  • Crematorium fees.
  • Doctors fees (if appropriate).
  • Parochial fees.
  • Ministers / church fees.
  • Obituaries / acknowledgements.
  • Flowers.
  • Order of service sheets.
  • Catering.
  • Any other additional extras you may require.

You will appreciate that disbursements can differ from the estimate as they are not under the direct control of the funeral director but every effort is made to give as near accurate an estimate as is possible.

The funeral account will be sent to you one week after the funeral has taken place.

Payment can be made by Cash, Cheque, Credit/Debit Card or by Bacs direct to our bank account (see staff for details).

Help with funeral costs

We are not able to guarantee the availability of any social fund Funeral payment as every families circumstances will differ The social fund may make a contribution towards the cost of a Simple funeral within the United Kingdom.

This includes:

  • Conveying the deceased from the place of death to our Chapel of Repose.
  • Cemetery fees or Crematorium fees.
  • Doctors fees.
  • Contribution towards the fees of the funeral director.

Our staff will be pleased to help you fill in the forms to help you make a claim for a social fund payment.

You can get help with the cost of a funeral if you receive any one of the following qualifying benefits or entitlements:

  • Income Support.
  • Housing Benefit.
  • Council Tax Benefit.
  • Job Seeker’s Allowance (Income based)
  • Disabled Person’s Tax Credit.
  • Working Family’s Tax Credit.
  • Child Tax Credit at a rate higher than the family element.

Benefit advice about Funeral Payments (Payable to the responsible person if in receipt of qualifying benefit) may be obtained from The Social Fund, Tel: 0845 608 8510 during office hours and at www.jobcentreplus.gov.uk

For advice on Bereavement Benefit (may be payable to the widow(er)/civil partner if the deceased was under 60)
Tel: 0845 606 0265

Any queries regarding pensions and allowances can be directed to the Pension Service. Tel: 0845 6060 265
www.thepensionservice.gov.uk

If the deceased was in receipt of a war pension, you need to telephone the Veterans Agency on Freephone 0800 169 2277
www.veterans-uk.info

Check if there is any money available from:

  • Bank or Building Society accounts of the deceased.
  • Insurance Death Policies.
  • Any lump sum payments made by a pension scheme or relative, (either yours or those of the deceased).
  • Any savings you have in a bank or building society.
  • Premium Bonds.
  • National Savings.
  • Cash.

Legal matters

When a death occurs, it is very important to ascertain whether or not the deceased has left a will. This may contain instructions regarding details of the funeral arrangements, a will may be with a solicitor or bank for safe keeping or among personal papers.

It is advisable to consult a solicitor at this time. The solicitor will be able to help with probate, take care of many issues surrounding the deceased’s estate (including the will, problems of intestacy, Grant of Representation, letters of administration etc.)

We are available to help with advice; we can also recommend solicitor’s that on a daily basis can process and administer legal services associated with probate, estates, wills and other related services.

Vehicles

A hearse is provided to convey the deceased to the funeral as part of our service and also included if required is one chauffeur driven limousine which can accommodate up to six passengers. Additional limousines requested will be charged at the rate applicable at the time.

Staff / Bearers

All necessary staff will be provided as part of our service prior to the funeral.

On the day of the funeral sufficient bearers and attendants will be provided to assist with either a cremation or a burial depending on your choice of funeral.

Viewing the Deceased

Family members often request to see the deceased and pay their last respects in private.

The hygienic treatment, care and attending to the deceased is a priority whether viewing takes place or not.

Viewing in our Chapel of Repose is via appointment only, and you are welcome to spend as much time as you need to pay your respects.

Coffins and Caskets

A choice of burial and cremation coffins and caskets are available on request .

We also supply environmentally friendly coffins, alternatives to wood coffins made of wicker, bamboo or cardboard.

Floral Tributes

Floral tributes are an important part of a funeral./p>

We are happy to arrange these for you via local florists who will be pleased to help you choose from a wide variety of different styles, individual designs and seasonal flowers to suit your own personal taste.

Flowers may be sent to our Chapel of Repose on the day of the funeral to accompany the hearse to the funeral. Afterwards at your request suitable flowers can be taken to a local nursing or residential care home or to a local family grave or home.

Newspaper notices

If you require a obituary notice or acknowledgement notice in any local or national newspaper we will be pleased to assist you with the wording and placing of the notice on your behalf.

Stationery / Printing

We are able to arrange printing personalised Order of Service sheets, Books of Remembrance and other printing requirements on request.

Catering for Receptions after the funeral

We can arrange for you upon request catering at various venues who are experienced in providing funeral buffets:

  • Local hotels, restaurants and public houses to accommodate large or small gatherings supplying hot meals or buffet style meals.
  • Outside catering to host the funeral buffet at your own home or other location.

Music

At a funeral service music can help to reflect the character of the deceased as a reminder of their personality, taste and interests. A personal favourite piece of music can be uplifting and helpful to you at the funeral. Please ask if you would like us to find a special piece of music, or other request e.g. a Piper, Trumpeter or Soloist to help you celebrate your loved ones life.

Flags

Union Flag, Welsh, Scottish and various countries plus R.A.F, Army and Naval flags are always available to be draped over the coffin.

Special Requirements

If there is a special requirement or desire which will not compromise the dignity of the deceased or occasion please ask. For example:

Horse drawn Hearses

Box Bros. Ltd. through years of involvement are national specialists in supplying Horse drawn Hearses, which are available with either black or white horses in teams of two or four. Supplied to the highest standard of vehicles, horses, grooms, drivers, drapes and plumes of any colour selected by the family will be supplied.

Other Hearses

Motorcycle Hearse and other unusual Hearses available on request.

Family bearers for the coffin.

(Advice and assistance willingly given by qualified staff)

Charitable Donations

Will be accepted or collected if requested donations for a charitable organisation of your choice, we record the donations and forward these on your behalf to the appropriate charity.

Pre Paid Funeral Plans

We supply plans, this allows you to pay for your funeral in advance. The money you pay is held in a trust fund and is guaranteed to cover the cost of the agreed funeral plan allowing you to spare your family the emotional and financial worry of planning your funeral.

The funeral details can be tailored to satisfy your own personal choice, traditions and desires e.g. a horse drawn hearse, wicker coffin or even a woodland burial or a burial at sea.

International and UK Repatriation

When a loved one dies abroad we can:

  • Arrange for the deceased to be repatriated back to the UK by air or sea.
  • Arrange all necessary paperwork with Consulates Embassies etc.
  • Supply a zinc lined coffin for repatriation.
  • Provide all the hygienic treatments needed.

When the death occurs in the UK we can:

  • Arrange for the deceased to be repatriated to another country either by air or sea.
  • Arrange all necessary paperwork with Consulates Embassies etc.
  • Supply a zinc lined coffin for repatriation.
  • Provide all the hygienic treatments needed.

Repatriation to other parts of the UK can be arranged in our repatriation vehicles irrespective of distance.