The death of a loved one can be an extremely devastating emotional experience. It is very sad that during such a trying time, there is so much to handle, and so many things which must be done. For some, the task of dealing with their deceased loved one’s personal business can seem impossible. One way to simplify things a bit is to separate what must be done now, and what can be put off for a while. Another way is to have a checklist of what to do when a loved one dies. It is also a good idea to have an attorney to help ease the difficulty of handling business and legal matters. I have the knowledge and experience to help you and your loved one through this trying time. Here is a checklist of some things to do in this difficult time.
Notify the Authorities
If a death occurs at home, it will be up to the person who discovers the death to notify the proper authorities. Calling 911 is always the first step in getting this underway. Although the shock can be paralyzing, it is important to act quickly, especially if your loved one wished to be an organ donor. If the death of a loved one happens while he or she is in a hospital or hospice, they will handle the notification process for you.
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Notify Family and Friends
This step is important not only on behalf of the deceased and their loved ones, but for you as well. The quicker you notify other loved ones of the deceased, the sooner you will have support for yourself. Notifying friends and family can make it possible for you to have help in handling the rest of the matters at hand. You will need someone to watch the home if the deceased lived alone, someone to pick up mail, take care of pets, etc.
Making Funeral Arrangement
In the best of circumstances, your loved one has already discussed how they want their funeral arrangements to be made, and written a memorandum of how the arranges should be made and who should make them. If not, perhaps you and the other family and friends can discuss the details of planning the funeral. The directors of funeral homes are very experienced at handling such matters and can guide you through the process of choosing a casket, scheduling the services, etc. I can help you to get through the paperwork.
Handling the Paperwork
If the deceased did not have a Last Will and Testament that named a Personal Representative to oversee the way his or her estate would be disposed, then a Personal Representative will have to be appointed by the Probate Court. There may be trusts, insurance policies, bank statements, credit card bills, loans, and other papers in the home of the deceased. I can help you deal with the mountain of paperwork and manage the bills that were left.