The Steps

Your first steps will be based on the circumstances of your loss, however in the first few days after someone dies there are few things you must do:

  • Medical Certificate Confirming Cause of Death - If your loved one has died at home, you should call the doctor who will sign a medical certificate confirming the cause of death. If the death has happened in hospital, the doctor there will issue the certificate. You should also receive a Formal Notice that states that the doctor has signed the Medical Certificate and tells you how to register the death.

  • Register the death within 5 days (8 days in Scotland). You will then get the documents you need for the funeral.

  • Arrange the funeral – we would recommend contacting a funeral director as soon as possible after the death, even before obtaining the Death Certificate as they will advise and help with all the necessary arrangements including special circumstances such as a death occurring away from home.