When death occurs

What to do first

When death occurs at home and a doctor has seen the deceased within 14 days prior to the death phone the doctor straight away. It may be out of hours for the surgery but there is always an on call doctor to speak to. They will ask you a few basic questions and advise you to call the funeral director to take the deceased into their care. If this has happened out of hours, we will contact the surgery on opening to advise the deceased’s doctor where the person is. The Doctor may need to come to our Chapel to examine the deceased to issue a Certificate of Cause Of Death. If death occurs during surgery time the doctor may come out to your home to confirm the cause of death, he will give permission for the deceased to be moved into our care. A Cause of Death Certificate may be issued at this time, or, will be made available for collection from the doctor’s surgery later in the day.

What if death has occurred in hospital or in a nursing home?

If death occurs in hospital, the patient services or bereavement department will look after the official paperwork for you. They will make you an appointment to visit them to collect the Certificate of cause of death from them. If death occurs in a nursing/care home, they will contact the surgery or the doctor involved and find out when and where the Certificate can be collected, usually this is by you from the Doctors surgery. You need the certificate of cause of death to take to the registrars to register the death.

What if it’s a sudden or suspicious death?

If the deceased has not been seen by a doctor within 14 days prior to dying, telephone the police. The police will act for Her Majesty’s Coroner, they call their contracted funeral director to take the deceased into their care. The Coroners officer will keep in touch with you and let you what is happening at all times. If the coroners contracted funeral director is called to take the deceased into the care of the coroner for investigation into the cause of death you are not obliged to use their services for arranging the funeral. You are free to contact a funeral director of your own choosing if you wish to do so, you will need to let the coroners officer know so they can contact them when the body is released for the funeral arrangements to go ahead.

The Coroner:

There are a number of reasons that a death might be reported to H. M. Coroner. There is no need for alarm and you should be guided by the coroner’s officer who will inform you of the procedures and involvement of the pathology team. The coroners officer will notify you when registration may be able to take place and when the deceased can be released into the care of the Funeral Director.

How do we prepare for arranging the funeral?

When you feel you want to, you can start to think about a few things that will help you tailor the funeral service/ceremony which we can arrange and provide for you. We are here to help you every step of the way, so as to ensure the funeral service/ceremony is that of a respectful and dignified one to reflect the life of your loved one.

Here are a few things that may help you to make some decisions.
• Did the deceased have a religious denomination?
• Did they speak of burial or cremation and where will this take place?
• Should we formally place a press notice into the local paper?
• Will there be flowers or a charity/charities nominated for donations in the deceased’s memory?
• Will the deceased be dressed in their own clothes or would you like us to provide a gown?
• Would you like to have a printed order of service/ceremony ?
• Did the deceased have a pre-paid funeral plan or any arrangements listed anywhere, i.e with a solicitor in a will?

These are just a few of the things we will discuss with you when we get together to make the funeral arrangements. We will sit and gently talk to you about you loved one to enable us to get a picture of the person they were so we can advise you on different services we can offer to arrange a funeral fitting to the life that has been led.

During our meeting we will advise you of all costs and disbursements for the arrangements we have made with you, you will be given a hand written estimate for these at this time. When the arrangements have been confirmed and agreed we will send you a letter of confirmation including timings for the cortege, along with all the other details arranged, included will be two copies of a typed estimate of costs and disbursements, one for you to kindly sign and return to us prior to the funeral, agreeing to take responsibility for the funeral and it’s cost. If the final account is going to a solicitor or bank please tell us and let us have a note of their name and address, the other copy is for you to keep for your records.

We very much hope that the information on our website will have been useful to you at this difficult time.
If you have any questions which have not been answered or need any further explanation, please contact us, we are here to help.

We feel that it is a great privilege to be in the position to help someone at such a difficult time, we are contactable 24 hours.

“We believe the very smallest of detail can make the biggest of differences”.


Terms & Conditions | Privacy | Contact

Copyright © 2013-2017 Andy Free Ltd. All Rights Reserved. Registered in England and Wales. No. 08431450
Registered Office: Exchange House Centre, Exchange Street, Attleborough, Norfolk, NR17 2AB
Attleborough telephone: 01953 452455 | email: attleborough@andyfree.com
Wymondham telephone: 01953 605222 | email: wymondham@andyfree.com
Website Designed, Maintained & Hosted by East Anglia IT Solutions