The death of a loved one can be one of the most distressing things that any of us experience. Apart from the legal formalities arising from the death there may be a need to inform others of what has happened, arrange the burial or cremation or in special circumstances arrange for the repatriation of the deceased to Northern Ireland or overseas.
There may also be other worries and concerns including how to deal with the costs of the funeral.
You can be assured that as an accredited member of the National Association of Funeral Directors (NAFD) you can confidently leave all the arrangements to us. Steenson Funeral Services offer a discreet, professional, caring and complete funeral service that will help the bereaved make the necessary arrangements at this most difficult of times.
We offer the following information in the form of answers to typical questions that we have been asked over many years as an aid to families and relatives coping with bereavement. However, please talk to us as soon as possible so that everything can be left in our care, helping us to give you peace of mind at this time of need, and provide dignity to your loved one.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
What should you do when someone dies?
What should you do if death occurs outside Northern Ireland?
How do you register a death?
How do you make the funeral arrangements?
Can you provide advice on cremation?
Can you help with burial arrangements?
Can you help with newspaper notices?
What about flowers and wreaths?
Is there help with funeral costs?
Do you provide bereavement support?
If death has occurred at home after an illness the family doctor should be contacted as soon as possible. It would be usual for the relatives to contact us after talking to your doctor. The doctor is responsible for issuing the Medical Certificate detailing cause of death. This form is very important and contains information on how the death should be registered. In situations where the doctor is unsure of the cause of death he or she will refer the death to the Coroner. If the death occurred in hospital, then the hospital doctor is responsible for issuing the certificate.
At Steenson Funeral Services we have considerable experience of repatriating deceased persons to Northern Ireland from many countries and also from Northern Ireland to overseas. We can advise on legal requirements and procedures and can help with all the arrangements.
On issue of the Medical Certificate the death must be registered within 5 working days. We will advise you of your local Registrar's Office, although registration can now take place at any Registrar's Office in Northern Ireland. On registration, and the payment of a small fee, the Registrar will issue a GRO 21 form and a Form 36/BD8. The GRO 21 form permits burial or cremation. The other form, Form 36/BD8, will be required for benefit payment from Social Security Offices. Certified copies of these documents may be needed to close bank and or building society accounts, to claim insurance and for obtaining authority to deal with the deceased's estate.
Funerals are obviously very emotional events and it is advisable that they be carefully planned using a Funeral Director. Increasingly people are planning for the future and making arrangements for funerals. Please refer to the sections on Prepaid and Prearranged funerals. In these circumstances the arrangements have been carefully planned in advance with the Funeral Director. We can provide help and advice on all aspects of funeral arrangements. We have a Chapel of Rest and can arrange for religious services at our premises or at a church.
Yes we can help you make the necessary arrangements for cremation.
Yes we can advise on reopening of a grave or help to obtain a new grave. Please contact us.
We provide a complete funeral service and will arrange death notices, obituary notices and acknowledgements in local and national newspapers.
We can advise on flowers. Our Wreath Store has a range of silk wreaths, we supply fresh flowers through a local florist and we can also arrange for printed cards. We can also administer charitable donations in lieu of flowers and supply lists of the contributors to the next of kin.
Please discuss this with us. We can advise whom to contact and what forms are required to claim help. Northern Ireland residents may be eligible for help towards the cost of the funeral if the next of kin arranging the funeral are in receipt of one of the following: - Income Support, Income Support based on Job Seeker Allowance, Housing Benefit, Council Tax Benefit, Family Credit, Disability Working Allowance.
Providing sympathetic care and professional advice to bereaved relatives and friends is an intrinsic part of a professional funeral director's service. Bereavement can take many forms and can last for a long time after a funeral. At special times for example, Christmas, it is usual to reflect on family and friends. This is especially true for the elderly who have been left on their own, or parents who have lost young children.
We would advise that you:
- Talk to other people about the person who has died, your memories and how you are feeling
- Try to eat properly and to rest (even if you can’t sleep)
- Take the time to grieve
- If things do not seem to be getting better do seek help and support.
Organisations such as Cruse Bereavement Care: Tel. 028 2766 6686 and The Samaritans: Tel. 028 7032 0000 may be able to help.
It is important that you try not to:
- Isolate yourself
- Keep your emotions bottled up
- Think badly of yourself or feel guilty for not coping well
- Turn to drugs or alcohol – the relief will only be temporary.
Please speak to us if you have further questions.