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What To Do When a Death Occurs

No matter how much organized a person is, sometimes life throws the most unpredictable situation at us where one finds himself helpless and do nothing. We all think of our future and life and try to be as much organized as we can. It is natural not to think of any unpleasant or unfortunate situation, but it is only sensible and essential to be prepared for anything. Everyone is supposed to leave this world one day. When you see a loved one dying, it takes you by shock, and you do not know what to do. This article will walk you through important things to do when someone dies;


1.Talk to Your Family and Friends to Have Their Love and Support

One is supposed to be in a very vulnerable situation when he gets such tragic news of losing their loved one. One must need emotional support and love from his friends and family to process the trauma and share the grief. The first call you make to your immediate family, telling them about the loss of a family member or friend, must be challenging but has to be done. Make sure all the immediate members of the deceased person get the news. Talking to the family and friends, informing them about death is very important, and the first step towards processing the trauma. If the dead person was not close and you are notified, then offer your condolences to the family and tell them that they have your support.

2.Make Immediate Plans and Arrangements

The first thing you need to do is read their will or get to know if they have any individual death wish or anything specific, they wanted for their funeral. You should know if the deceased person was an organ donor so you can plan accordingly. If the person had not died in the hospital, then maybe shift the body to the hospital if the person was an organ donor. Ensure you are not wasting any time doing this, as specific organs must be taken out within a particular time. If the person had any kids or pets or anyone, he was responsible for, take care of them.  

3.Inform the Close Relatives, Friends, and Colleagues

One of the most important and most challenging things is to share the death news of a person with their close family members. So, make sure you tell the family in the best possible way. Starting from the close relatives and friends to colleagues or workers, tell them about the relationship and the emotional bond.

4.Fulfil Any End of Life Wishes

It is often seen that people express their after-death wishes such as the place of burial or any specific desire regarding their funeral; many people registered themselves for organ donation etc. So, talk to the close family members and friends and know if the deceased person had any particular wish about their funeral or burial. Also, be sure to ask about the dead person's religious preference so you may organize everything as the person had wished. Arrange the funeral accordingly once you know everything.

5.Make the Funeral, Burial, or Cremation Arrangements.

Most people have had signed up for prepaid funeral services to ensure their families do not have to go through the hassle of arranging it. So, search the paperwork to determine if the deceased person had signed up for any prepaid funeral service. If not, you can either make all the arrangements yourself or lookup for companies that help arrange funeral ceremonies and help in burial or cremation. If the person was from the military or a certain religious group, contact the relevant administration, and check if they offer any burial services. In short, look for as much help as you can get to plan the funeral or burial as it will make things easier for you, and everything will go smoothly. Ask any of your wordsmith relatives or friend for writing the obituary.

6.Choose A Charitable Organization

It is very common to decide on a charitable organization so that the people could donate and honor the deceased person's legacy. If you know of any social cause that your deceased loved one was interested in, you can look for an organization that works for that particular cause and expect the attendees to donate them. Taking flowers for the immediate family might be a nice gesture but offering a donation to the relevant organization to honor the deceased person's legacy is even more admirable and incredible. You can also ask your relatives and friends to do some charity as per their financial ability if you think they would not donate to a certain organization.

7. Forward the Mail

Considering the deceased person lived alone, an important thing you need to do is to go to the post office and ask them to forward the mail to your address. You would get to know about any other subscriptions and accounts etc., that the deceased had, and people would get the idea of his passing. This will also help you learn about their assets and bills and what else is required from you.

8. Get the Death Certificates

It is imperative to get death certificates as soon as possible as these are required for literally everything. Being the immediate family member, you are supposed to close all sorts of accounts and to claim insurance or monetary benefits of any kind. You can only claim all these before mentioned things get access to the will when registering the government directory's death. Remember that you might need at least ten copies of the death certificate to complete all the processes. Going through this whole process will also tell you if there still are other things that need to be taken care of.

9. Get Access to the Will

The immediate family members of the deceased person need to get to know what's in the will. Most people family members know about where the will had been kept. However, if you do not know, look up where all the documents are placed or lookup in a safety box. Once you have found the will, please consult with an attorney to interpret it as it could be emotionally challenging for the family members. In case the documents are signed by a particular law firm, then contact them and aware them of your loved ones passing.

10. Take some time to grieve

The death of a close relative might put you through a lot of trauma and stress. Once you are done with the funeral and other important things, it's time for you to take a break and process all those emotions. Take some time to grieve and understand that that you have to live without them. Sometimes people find it challenging and need help to accept reality. So, make sure you go through therapy if you think you need help dealing with it. Taking a break and spending time with family or people whom you consider your support group also helps.

11. Inform the IRS

Once a person passes away, their security number no longer works. To resume or authorize activities on behalf of the state, you need to get the IRS's new tax id number. This new number that you are given is called EIN, i.e., employer identification number. You may think of it as an estate identification number as that makes more sense. You can get it online or by mail as per your convenience. This form would be used while submitting the final tax form.

12. Publish a Note

You are legally bound to publish a note stating the death of the deceased person. The immediate family members are required to do this to ensure that every company or institution gets to know it, and if there are any bills or unpaid amount, the family get the chance to pay it. However, there is specific software that instantly notifies about it. Make sure you publish this notice for creditors because otherwise, they would have the legal right to ask for the heirs' payment, and you will have to pay it.

13. Inform the Insurance Company

Getting life insurance has become so common these days. Many people go for health insurance, life insurance, and other insurances to make their lives easier. Most people go for life insurance so that their families do not have to suffer after their demise. Therefore, submit the claim for the insurance money and begin the process. Call the relevant institution and ask them about the required documents. Visit the office once you get all the documents and start the process.

14. Cancel the driver's license and credit card

Do not forget to close the driver's license as it's crucial to avoid any identity theft. Call the department of motor vehicles and tell them to remove the deceased person's name. Delete or memorialize social media accounts. Deleting the accounts might not be possible unless you know the password, so contact the company and tell them to memorialize the account by showing them your id card copies and the deceased's death certificate.

People do not realize what needs to be done and looked after in such a situation. If you see someone going through a similar situation, tell them that you are there for them. Read them this article or remind them of all the steps and make sure they have everything covered.


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