As directors of funeral homes in Cottage Grove, OR., we frequently see how many people are simply unsure of what to do when a loved one passes. This is understandable as it is most likely the first time people are experiencing the situation. Add to that the feelings of shock, confusion, and loss, and knowing the actions to take can be simply overwhelming.
While there are many things that will need to be addressed, it can help immensely if you remember to just take one thing at a time. Don’t feel as if you have to take care of everything all at once. Also, don’t be afraid to enlist other family members and delegate some tasks to them.
To help you in this process, we have compiled a list of the most important things that need to be taken care of as well as a general timeframe of when they can/should be done.
Do These Things Immediately Following the Death
Immediately after the person dies there are several things that need to be done. These things include:
- Get a legal pronouncement of death – If your loved one was in a nursing home, then they will typically handle this. If your loved one died at home, you will need to have a medical expert announce them as dead. To do this, call 911 and your loved one will be transported to the emergency room where the doctors will make the declaration.
- Tell friends and family – When you are ready, you can send out a group email or text letting people know what has happened. If you’d rather, you can just tell one or two family members and have them pass on the word.
Complete These Things a Few Days After the Passing
- Plan the arrangements – Choose a funeral home and meet with them to plan the cremation services or burial as well as any memorial services, visitations, etc.
- Secure the property – If your loved one was living in their own home, secure that home by making sure all the doors and windows are locked and anything valuable is put away. It’s also a good idea to throw away any food in the refrigerator and pick up any mail. If they had any pets, make sure they are taken care of by taking them with you, or another friend, or placed in a safe boarding kennel.
- Forward their mail – Have their mail forwarded to your address. If this can’t be done, make sure to check their mailbox daily. This way you can see any bills, accounts, and subscriptions they might have had that will need to be taken care of.
Tasks to Complete in the Following Weeks
The next few weeks will consist of getting all of your loved one’s affairs into order. This includes things like working with credit card companies to close accounts, having their driver’s license canceled, closing their email and social media accounts, contacting other loan holders, accounts, etc.
If your loved one had a lot of accounts or left things a little messy, this may seem daunting. Just remember you don’t have to do all of this in one day. Simply make a list of what needs to be done and go down it one at a time. After your loved one’s services from funeral homes in Cottage Grove, OR., you will need time to grieve and mourn so, while it’s important to get these tasks accomplished, make sure you are also making time for yourself and self-care.