• W.Brindley's Funeral Service

    Call us 24hrs: 01457 765260

  • W.Brindley's Funeral Service

    Call us 24hrs: 01457 765260

  • W.Brindley's Funeral Service

    Call us 24hrs: 01457 765260

  • W.Brindley's Funeral Service

    Call us 24hrs: 01457 765260

  • W.Brindley's Funeral Service

    Call us 24hrs: 01457 765260

When Someone Dies

In Hospital.

If the death occurs in hospital, the hospital nursing staff will contact the person named by the deceased as their next of kin. This may be, but need not be, a relative.

The next of kin will then need to make contact with the hospital Bereavement Office, who will advise whether it is possible for a doctor to issue the medical certificate, allowing the death to be registered and, if so, when this certificate will be made available for collection. If the doctor who has been treating the deceased is unable to issue a death certificate, the death will then have to be reported to the Coroners Officer for the district in which the death occurred. In the Tameside area, the Coroners Officer is based in Stockport.

Please also be aware that the hospital Bereavement Offices are usually only open during normal working weekdays.

At Home or in a Nursing Home.

If the death was expected, you should make contact with the doctor whom attended the deceased during their final illness. If the death occurred at a Nursing Home, the staff will make contact with the doctor for you. If the doctor can certify the cause of death, you will be given:

  • A Medical Certificate that shows the cause of death (this will be in a sealed envelope, addressed to the Registrar).
  • A Formal Notice which states that the doctor has signed the Medical Certificate and tells you how to register the death.

If a death is confirmed by an Out of Hours G.P., then the death may still need to be reported to the Coroners Office. This is because the Out of Hours G.P has no access to the patients medical records.

At this stage in time, the death can not be certified, and it will be treated as an uncertified death, (please see below, Suddenly). The only exception to this is if the Out of Hours service are made aware of an expected death by the patients normal G.P. surgery, and a "Statement of Intent" is issued by the patients normal G.P. These statements have to be renewed on a 14 day cycle to keep them current and valid.

If the death is referred to the Coroners Office in this instance, then you will need to make contact with the patients own doctors surgery at your first opportunity. If the law enables them, they will then make the appropriate documentation available to you.

Suddenly.

In the case where a death occurs suddenly, you should make contact with the family doctor or the Ambulance Service. The protocol that will follow in such a situation is the Coroners Office will need to be informed about the death. It will then most likely  be the Coroner's duty in establishing the medical cause of death.

When it is required for the Coroner's Office to informed, it is normal practice and protocol for a Police Officer to attend. This action is necessary for a report to be written up for submission to the Coroner's Officer.

The Police will then request that the Coroners contracted Funeral Director attend the premises, in order to take the deceased to the relevant hospital to ascertain the medical cause of death. Currently in the Greater Manchester Police jurisdiction they have a contract with a large conglomerate group to carry out this role. At this stage, they will be attending at the Coroner's request, just to take the deceased into the care of the Coroner, and no attempt in securing funeral arrangements should be made with you. This activity is in contradiction to the terms of the issued contact.

Once the police and coroners team have left the premises, it is up to you to then make contact with a Funeral Director of choice. You do not need to wait for the medial cause of death to be found before contacting your Funeral Directors, and my advice would be to make contact as soon as you reasonable can.

If there is any reason to suspect that the death was not due to natural causes, do not touch or remove anything within the surrounding area. The death will be referred to the Coroner and the Police may also need to carry out further checks.

The Coroner is involved.

In any of the following circumstances, a doctor will have to report the death to the Coroner:

  • an accident or injury
  • an industrial disease
  • during a surgical operation
  • before recovering from an anaesthetic
  • if the cause of death is unknown
  • the death was sudden and unexplained

If the person who has died has not been seen or been treated, with a life depleting illness, by a doctor within the last 14 days, or has been admitted into hospital less than 24 hours before they died, the death must then be reported to the Coroner.

Who Can Register a Death.

The law only allows certain people to register a death. Please see our Registering a Death page.

 

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