First Steps

When a death occurs, there are so many things to consider and decisions to make. 

These lists can help you through them.

At home

If the deceased was under doctor care, notify the doctor. If the deceased was not under doctor care or another at-home medical care provider, call 999. The Gardai may come to the place of death. This is just a formality. Notify the Funeral director.

At a hospital

Notify the hospital which funeral director you have selected. The Hospital may contact the funeral director on your behalf once they have completed their necessary documents.

At a Hospice Facility:

Notify the hospice facility which funeral director you have selected. The hospice staff may notify the funeral director on your behalf.

At a Nursing/Long Term Care Facility

Notify the staff as to which funeral director you have selected; they may notify the funeral director on your behalf.

Out of the Country

Even if a death occurs away from home, you should notify your local funeral director. If you plan to have the deceased repatriated and brought home, or if you plan to have services in your hometown, your local funeral director can help facilitate transportation and coordination with a funeral director where the death occurred.

What to do next?

Contact These People As Soon As Possible
  • The funeral director to set an appointment to make further arrangements.
  • Relatives and friends.
  • Personal Representative.
  • Cemetery where you want or your own property.
  • Employers (the employer of the deceased and of relatives who will need time off).
  • Insurance agencies (life, health and accident).
  • Religious, fraternal, civic and veteran’s organizations and unions (if applicable).
  • Solicitor and Accountant.
  • Full legal name – other names must be identified by “Also Known As” (AKA).
  • Date and place of birth.
  • PPSN.
  • Home address

These may be required to establish rights for insurance, pensions, survivor benefits, ownership, etc.

  • Will.
  • Military discharge papers.
  • Insurance policies.
  • Bank books.
  • Deeds.
  • Income tax returns, receipts or cancelled cheques.
  • Whether your loved one is to be buried or cremated.
  • Service details (e.g. would you like a visitation period, a formal removal, a reception?).
  • Clothing the deceased will be buried or cremated in.
  • If a member of the clergy will be engaged for the service.
  • Music, pictures, flowers, scripture or readings.
  • If you would like a charity to receive donations
  • in memory of your loved one.
  • The funeral director will ask if you have made any arrangements with a cemetery.
  • If you have not done this, you will need to visit the cemetery.
  • Would you like other members of the family to be buried with your loved one in the future?
  • This determines the size and type of cemetery property needed.
  • What type of memorial would you prefer?
  • Would you like to schedule a viewing or visitation prior to the cremation?
  • Would you like to use our chapel for a short service prior to the cremation?
  • Would you like your family to be present at the time of cremation? (This is called a Witness
  • Cremation).
  • What type of urn would you prefer (metal, wood, marble, ceramic, biodegradable, etc.)?
  • What type of engraving would you like on the urn?
  • What type of final resting place would you prefer for your loved one (ground burial, above ground niches, or scattering or placement of cremated remains in a cremation garden)?
  • Would you like other members of your family to be with your loved one in the future?
  • This determines the size and type of the final resting place.
  • A burial urn will be required for ground burial in cemeteries. This can be bio-degradable, wood or metal.
  • What type of memorial do you prefer (e.g. an upright monument, or a cremation bench)?
  • Would you like to be present for the scattering?
  • Would you like a permanent memorial to be placed in or around the area where the scattering took place?
  • Funeral arrangements coffin and/or urn including clergy, florist, newspapers, transportation, and other selected services and merchandise.
  • Cemetery charges (e.g. grave purchase, opening/closing of the grave, selected headstone or other memorial).
  • Current and urgent bills (i.e. mortgage, rent, taxes, telephone, etc.).