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At A Glance: Dealing With Death

A few things to keep in mind during a very tough time.

There’s never an easy way to cope directly after someone close passes away. These five tips can help you focus and get a lay of the land.

1. Report The Death

Let the proper authorities know the death occurred to begin the death certification process. If the death happens in a facility, they should help. If you’ve already been dealing with a funeral home, call them. If you have no other options, call 911.

2. Obtain A Few Copies Of The Death Certificate

You’ll need multiple copies of the death certificate in order to do most of the tasks involved in disposition of the body, settling the estate, and wrapping up other affairs (i.e. bank accounts, insurance, benefits, etc...). [Helpful Resource: State-by-State Death Certificate Ordering Info]

3. Working With A Funeral Director

Two things you need to know: Will the body be buried or cremated? What type of service would you like to have? You can also work with this person to obtain the products you’ll need (casket, urn), cemetery arrangements as well personalize the service.

4. Let People Know And Create A Death Notice

After calling or emailing family and close friends (and possibly accessing the deceased’s address book or email account so you don’t leave anyone out), write a death notice and place it in local media outlets with the details of the service. [Helpful Resource: Death Notice Checklist]

5. Take Some Time For Yourself

Don’t hesitate to engage friends so all the work doesn’t fall on you. While you’ll be making all the big decisions, leave the smaller ones to another person so you can take time to grieve and not get too overwhelmed. [Helpful Resource: Ways To Deal With Grief]

Deep Dive: 10 Things To Do After A Death

  • Funeral Planning
  • Settling an Estate
  • Grief Support & Loss
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