When a Death Occurs

If the death occurs at home and is…

Expected

When someone dies at home and their death was expected you will need to contact your family doctor or the doctor who has most recently been in attendance. Once the doctor (or they may choose to send a medical practioner in their place), has attended please contact us and we will arrange to remove the deceased to our Chapel of Rest.

The doctor will normally issue the medical certificate of Cause of Death, which will need to be taken to the appropriate Registrars of Births & Deaths (an appointment needs to be made with the Registrar). For more information on registration view our Registration page.

If the death takes place in a residential care home or nursing home, the staff there will contact the doctor and ourselves on your behalf.

Unexpected

If someone dies suddenly at home or elsewhere and their death was unexpected the coroner will usually be involved. After speaking with either the doctor, police or paramedics, the coroner's officers will inform the coroner's contract funeral director to collect the deceased to take them to the mortuary. The family can then choose which funeral director they wish to carry out the funeral and contact them accordingly. (For more information on H.M. Coroner's procedure please visit our Coroners page)

If the Death Occurs at a Hospital...

When someone dies in hospital the deceased is taken from the hospital ward to the mortuary by the hospital staff and can only be collected from there by the funeral director when all the necessary release forms have been completed and certificates issued. In the case of most hospitals please contact the bereavement office and they will liaise with the appropriate doctors and then advise you when the medical certificate of Cause of Death is available to be collected.

Once this certificate has been obtained you can then make an appointment with the relevant registrar of Births and Deaths.

You are welcome to contact our office before the death certificate has been obtained so that we can offer advice to help you through the process of registration.

If the doctor cannot issue a certificate, then it may be that H.M. Coroner will become involved.