When a loved one dies, it can leave you wondering where to turn to next. Not only are you dealing with your grief, but you must also step-up and manage the deceased’s affairs. Before you get overwhelmed with the numerous tasks you must tackle, below is a short checklist of the initial issues you must address:
- Contact a funeral home or mortuary. You must decide which funeral home or mortuary should be contacted. If your loved one had a specific religious preference, you should notify the appropriate minister, advisor or other leader to assist with the services.
- Notifications. Drafting a list of friends and family members that should be contacted can be extremely helpful. Making notification calls can be emotionally stressful and you should ask for help. If you have a prepared contact list, it can make this process simpler for everyone.
- Death Certificate. Usually your loved one’s physician or medical examiner will finalize and execute the death certificate. You will need several certified copies of the death certificate to provide to your loved one’s banks, insurance companies and other similar interested parties. Do not allow the removal of a body from the home without the medical examiner or law enforcement acknowledgement and approval. This can complicate getting a death certificate.
- Estate plan. If your loved one had a Last Will and Testament, Revocable Trust and/or other estate planning documents, you should confer with a qualified estate planning lawyer to discuss how to handle the probate and distribution of your loved one’s estate.
The above are examples of the initial matters that require your attention soon after a loved one dies. Our next blog titled “Affairs to Handle after a Loved One Dies” will go more in-depth in discussing the other tasks that should be handled after the funeral or other services. Remember, our attorneys are here to help you with everything you are facing when a loved one dies. Also, if you or a family member needs assistance in preparing an estate plan, call us to schedule an appointment.
The Astill Law Office has provided high quality legal services for over 30 years. We specialize in wills, trusts, estate planning, and asset protection. If you have any questions about creating a Trust, Will, or estate planning in general, contact The Astill Law Office at 801-438-8698.