Organisations and charities who support kinship carers with bereavement after a death.
What to do when someone dies
Learn the practical steps you need to take and find links to more advice and support for after a death.
If someone close to you dies, you could find yourself with new kinship care responsibilities. It’s not a situation anyone likes to think about, or even prepare for. This guide helps you deal with the practical side of bereavement.
Tell family and friends
Telling family and friends that someone has died is difficult and overwhelming. You could share the burden and ask other close family members to help you break the news. You don’t have to tell everyone at the same time.
Register the death
You need to register the death within five days (eight days in Scotland). You will need to share certain personal details for the person who has died with the registrar as well as official documents. You’ll get a certificate for burial or application for cremation, which you will need to arrange the funeral.
The registrar will want to know:
- the official cause of death
- the person’s full name, including any previous names
- their date and place of birth
- their last address
- their occupation
- the full name, date of birth and occupation of their spouse or civil partner, if they were married.
You will need to bring the death certificate to show the registrar. You should also bring any official documents belonging to the person who has died, including:
- NHS medical card
- proof of address
- national insurance number
- driving licence
- pension details
You should bring along your own identification too – a passport or driving licence.
Arrange the funeral
You can arrange the funeral yourself or use a funeral director to arrange the funeral. The person who has died may have had a pre-paid funeral plan.
The person who has died may have left instructions for a burial or cremation. They may have requested a religious ceremony or a civil funeral. Costs vary depending on the type of funeral the person had in mind. Funeral directors can take care of everything, which some people prefer, but it can be costly, as you are paying for a service.
Find an independent funeral director
- Search the National Association of Funeral Directors website
- Search the National Society of Allied and Independent Funeral Directors website
Other sources of help
Visit the Humanist Society website for information on arranging non-religious funerals.
Contact your local council for information on funerals, burials and cremation.
Money Helper has a useful guide to the costs of arranging a funeral.