What To Do When Someone Dies: Step by Step Guide To Ease the Process
When a loved one passes away, the loss can leave you confused, and wondering what your next steps should be. There are so many emotions going on at the time, handling things from a business perspective will probably be the last thing on your mind. Having a resource that guides you through the process can make things easier. This short guide can assist in understanding what to do when someone dies:
Official pronouncement of death
A medical professional is usually required to make the official pronouncement of death. Whether you are in the hospital or at home, this is the first step of the process. If you are at home, the coroner’s office will be contacted. Do not move the body unless instructed by the medical professional or law enforcement.
Questions to consider
You will be asked a few questions, such as whether or not you would like an autopsy, or if the person was an organ donor. These are important questions, as they all relate to what happens to the body once it is removed.
Removal and cleaning
The first step is to find a professional company to help remove the body. Discuss with the company if any cleaning needs to occur in your home. There are many professional medical waste companies that do a great job cleaning after a person has died in a home – also helping with the grieving process.
Putting things in order
Once the body has been removed and things start to sink in, it’s time to get to the little details. Designating a point person who will handle the arrangements for care of any minor children, pets, and business operations is first. There should also be someone on hand to notify family and friends, an employer, answer the phone, field any questions and collect mail. When someone dies, many people stop by the home to drop off food and pay their respects. The home should be cleaned and prepared to accept visitors.
Next, it’s important to delegate responsibilities to the person who has legal authority to make decisions, and locate any insurance policies to determine what monies are available for arrangements. If there is a will, it should be read to make sure final instructions and requests are honored. Once this information has been located, it’s time to contact the funeral home.
Making the funeral arrangements
By this time, a funeral home should have been selected and they are either preparing or have acquired the body. This is when the family decides whether or not there will be a funeral service and burial or cremation. The funeral home will help with the arrangements, including the selection of a casket, flowers, when the service will be held, who will officiate, and more. This should be done by someone who is level-headed and can negotiate fair pricing. It may be a good idea to comparison shop. The family should also decide which cemetery will house the body, and whether or not you want a plot or crypt. While this may be a difficult time, knowing what steps to take to ensure a smooth transition can make things easier for everyone involved and prevent little things from falling through the cracks. This guide should assist that process.