What to do when someone dies

We know there is practical advice that is needed to help you find the information you need immediately after a death.

It can be a very confusing time, but on this page we have signposted you to services which specialise in guiding you through some of the legal, financial and practical requirements following a death.

You will find a list of Useful Links to related sites at the bottom of the page. 


Step by Step Guide

Whether the death of your loved one was expected or sudden, dealing with the immediate arrangements which have to be done can be exhausting, overwhelming and confusing. You may want to ask a friend or relative to help you, or you may wish to deal with these on your own.

Please watch this video explaining in detail the step by step stages of what to do when someone dies

Visit this website below for more information, a free helpline and a fully comprehensive guide to everything you need to know; 

Bereavement Advice Centre





What is Probate

Please watch this video explaining the step by step process of probate following a death

Visit this site for more information and a free helpline 0800634 9494

Bereavement Advice Centre



You have 5 days within the UK and 8 in Scotland to register the death and receive a death certificate (you may find it useful to pay for additional copies, as you need to produce the death certificate at a later stage when speaking to banks etc).

You can go to any Register Office, but if you use the one in the area where the person died you’ll be given the documents you will need on the day. If you use a different Register Office, the documents will be sent to the office in the area where the person died before they are issued to you. This means you will usually wait a few days.  Registering the death will take about 30 minutes, you may need to make an appointment.

Please click here for comprehensive information and guidance. Bereavement Advice Centre


Visiting the Register Office can be a daunting and upsetting time. If you can take a friend or family member with you, it may be advisable.  Please have a look at the following page for a list of everything you will need to take with you

Bereavement Advice Centre


Tell Us Once is a service offered by most local authorities on behalf of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). The service allows the bereaved person to inform central and local government services of the death at one time rather than having to write, telephone or even attend each service individually. The Tell Us Once service can save you a great deal of time and effort

To stop all main correspondence please visit this page for more advice 




This is the Government website with a step by step guide.

Widows and Widowers/Civil Partners - you may be entitled to a one off lump-sum and/or benefits. You may also be able to claim if you are pregnant and your husband had died, or you are pregnant after fertility treatment and your civil partner has died. Please check with Gov.uk for eligibility.

Bereavement Payment - one off sum payment £2,000 

Bereavement Allowance or Bereavement Support Payment

Widowed Parent's Allowance - those with dependent children

Please call this number to talk through any entitlement in detail 

0345 606 0265 – Monday – Friday 8am – 8pm 

0345 606 0275 - Wales

Visit this site for more information GOV.UK

Bereaved relatives may also contact the Jobcentre Plus office regarding potential benefit claims.

0800 055 6688



It is distressing to receive unsolicited mail following a bereavement.

These sites will provide a form for you to complete to stop any direct mail.  This will be shared with mailing organisations and under the Data Protection Act, the information will not be used for any other purpose.

Stop Mail will send confirmation of the Stop Mail instruction together with a What Next guide if required. The guide gives practical information including details involving the DVLA, no further communication will be made from ourselves unless requested by yourself.

Stop Mail

The Bereavement Register - by registering with this free service, the names and addresses of the deceased are removed from mailing lists, stopping most advertising mail within as little as six weeks.

The Bereavement Register 


If you are a relative and have been left with a pet to look after, please contact this charity. 

The Cinnamon Trust provides long term care for pets whose owners have died or moved to residential accommodation which will not accept pets. Arrangements are made between owners and the Trust well in advance, so owners do have peace of mind in the knowledge that their beloved companion will have a safe and happy future. Emergency cards are available on request.

The Cinnamon Trust