What You Need to Do When a Loved One Dies

When a family member, spouse, or close loved one dies, it’s a very difficult time. If you’re the next of kin, and responsible for dealing with all the admin tasks, then this adds an extra layer of difficulty. It’s hard to know what to do first, or what order tasks need to be done. Here are some tips for dealing with this time and getting through it, so you can begin the grieving process. 

Contact a funeral director

You don’t have to use a funeral director to plan a funeral, but they really do make the process a lot easier. They take care of a lot of the admin around the death, get your loved one moved, and make all the arrangements for the funeral. Visit https://www.academyfuneralservices.com.au/ and you can find out more about what funeral directors do. Many funeral directors offer different packages, but they’ll often offer individual services if you prefer. They can also take care of things like death announcements, which can be difficult for the family to do by themselves during this difficult time. 

Look for a will

If someone dies with a will, it makes things easier, as they’ll often state their wishes about a variety of things from their funeral to dividing their estate. When it comes to dealing with their finances, things can get a little more complex. You’ll need to notify their bank and other financial institutions of the death and may need to send information such as a death certificate. Once settled, you may need to troubleshoot common tax issues that can arise from the estate, as these post-death taxes can be complicated, and may require the help of a tax expert.

Get paperwork together

You’ll be dealing with a lot of different agencies when someone dies, and they’ll usually want to see certain paperwork. It’s worth visiting the deceased’s house and looking for items such as:

  • Their birth certificates
  • Marriage certificates
  • Utility bills or anything that can be used as proof of address
  • Passport and driving licence

If possible, try to get several copies of the death certificate, as you may need to send off the original, and if you only have one, this can hold things up.

Register the death

The process of registering a death will vary depending on where you live and local laws. For example, in Australia, you need to go through the births, deaths, and marriages registry to register a death, and each state will have its own procedures. If you’re unsure what needs to be done, check your local government website, which usually has information about the process, what information you’ll need to provide, and more. 

When someone dies, it can seem overwhelming, as there’s a lot that needs to be done. Ideally, you should break down the tasks, so you aren’t trying to do everything at once. Also, it’s worth getting professional help wherever you can, for example, planning the funeral, as this will take some of the stress away from you and ensure everything is dealt with.