Dealing with the immediate issues after a loved one has died
The first thing to say about this is that everyone grieves in a different way. If the person who has died was a family member or some other person you were close to, or supposed to be close to, how each person deals with the emotions of that will be different and some very surprising. Not every parent loves their child and not every child loves their parent, so on their death, there is a social “norm”, that the survivor will be sad and bereaved, which might or might not be the case, they might be relieved! Remember there are no rules about grieving, you need to do it when you are ready and in a way that works for you!
So having managed to cope with the immediate few minutes and hours after someone has died, ensuring that the medical professionals are called in to certify the death and the funeral director is called to collect the body, the next few days seem to be a flurry of activity at a time when the survivors might well be feeling numb. They feel like they are going through the motions and it can be almost like an “out of body” experience, if the stress of the situation is that challenging.
The first thing to do is register the death and this cannot be done until you receive the appropriate medical forms from the GP or whoever is certifying the death. If there is going to be a cremation, this certification process requires signature by two separate doctors, to ensure that there was nothing suspicious about the death. With that you can go ahead and arrange the funeral and book the cremation (or burial).
The funeral director is a professional, they deal with bereaved people every day and are usually very understanding. It is their job to try to get the funeral that you and your loved one want, so they will patiently talk you through what to do next.
As well as arranging the funeral, you might also arrange a wake, a party to celebrate the life of the person who has just past. This is an opportunity for all those who knew that person to get together and talk about their memories of that person and what they will miss about them. They are a mixture of joy and sadness and can be restrained or raucous!
It is after those things have been resolved that you can turn your attention to the estate, which I have heard referred to as a “legal nightmare”! Depending on the size and complexity of the estate, it can be daunting and others can be far more simple. If help is needed, Nash & Co have a team that can assist.