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What to do when someone dies

If someone dies at Home, in a Nursing Home or a Non Emergency Hospital 

If someone dies at home, this will need to be confirmed by a qualified professional, I.E a GP, On-Call Doctor, Paramedic or Qualified Nurse. Once the death has been confirmed the family may contact us to arrange for their loved one to be taken into our care, Shortly after the deceased's GP will issue the medical Certificate, This will be needed before you can go and register the death with the registrar (see Registering a death).


The same applies for someone who passes away at a nursing home, they will usually ring us on your behalf once the death has been confirmed by a professional for us to take your loved one into our care, whilst passing all your details on to us to make it easier for you. 

In the case of a Non Emergency Hospital / Local Hospital, The same applies regarding confirmation of the death etc, The only difference being, The Hospital will have a contract with a local funeral director to look after the deceased until the paperwork has been completed, you should during this time contact the funeral director you wish to use. For our local Non-Emergency Hospital in Clay Cross we have the contact with them so your loved one will be in our care straight away. 

In Hospital

If someone dies in a city/larger Hospital the family will have to wait for Bereavement Staff to contact the family to collect the medical certificate, the Bereavement office will be able to advise you with the paperwork they are going to issue, and what you will need it for, They may also help you with the registrars and getting an appointment. It is normal for the Deceased to remain in the hospital during this process, once the paperwork is complete and you have registered, the certificate from the Registrars would be needed for us to collect the deceased from the hospital 

Should the funeral be a cremation the hospital will need to issue a two part cremation paperwork to us, this will only be done once we have requested them as they do come at a cost, w have to wait for these to completed before we can collect the deceased. so please advise us as soon as possible on if the funeral should be a burial or cremation. 

If the Coroner is involved 

Most of the deaths are completely natural that are referred to the coroner but the cause of death is not certain, hence the coroners involvement. 

The following deaths would be reported to the coroner:

  • Where the cause of death is unexpected or unknown

  • Where the cause of death is believed to be unnatural or suspicious 

  • Where the death occurred during an operation 

  • Where the death occurred due to work related heath issue

  • Where the death is due to an accident 


Usually someone from the coroners Office will speak to a near relative or their representative, as well as any doctors who looked after the deceased before deciding what route to take. If they were to decide a Post-Mortem is necessary the examination would take place to determine the cause of death and not for any research or other purpose.  

If the outcome of the Post-Mortem is that the death was of natural causes and there was no other circumstances requiring an Inquest the coroner would provide the documents that would allow the death to be registered. 

If the death was not due to natural causes and further tests are needed to find out the cause of death the coroner will open an inquest, They will usually release the deceased at this stage with paperwork that allow the funeral to go ahead without the registration of the death at this stage. 

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