What to do when you lose a loved one

May we firstly express that we are sorry that you need to read this information and sincerely hope that these guidelines will be helpful to you at this very difficult time.

If the death is expected or for someone who has been very ill and has been frequently seen by their doctor.

Death at Home

If the death occurs at home, please contact your GP or district nurse who has been helping you and your family throughout the illness. In the event of the death occurring during the night or over the weekend, you should still have an out of hours contact telephone which you can ring.

Once the death has been certified, regardless of the time and day, please contact us on 0121 313 0054 and you will always speak to either Daniel or Sarah. We are mindful that this will be an extremely difficult call for you to make and we will only take some preliminary contact details from you at this stage. We will ask you when you are ready for the transfer into our care to take place and this is your decision. Some families wish to spend further private time with the person who has passed away, other families request that we attend immediately and transfer their loved one to our Chapel of Rest at our funeral home, Grace Mary House on Eachelhurst Road, Walmley, Sutton Coldfield.

Our response time to your initial first call (should you wish it to be) will be within the hour if you are calling from a local area.

Either Daniel or Sarah will always be present along with an additional member of our dedicated team to ensure the transfer into our care is with care, dignity and the utmost respect.

Death in a Hospice or Nursing Home

Nurses and carers may have asked you to prepare if the death is imminent; however the death will still be a great shock with an overwhelming sense of grief.

You may have provisionally given our details already to the Hospice or Nursing home, and if this is the case, they will contact us on your behalf.

If you hadn’t planned or simply could not face thinking ahead, there is still time to discuss with your family on how you wish to move forward and who you would like to help you.

Again, telephone contact may be made with ourselves at any time of the day or night to talk and for us to answer any questions or concerns you may have. Once you instruct the Hospice or Nursing home of our details, they will ring us to arrange transfer into our care.

Death in Hospital

For deaths occurring in Hospital, unfortunately we are unable to act and transfer into our care from your first call.

To be able to transfer into our care, the death needs to be firstly registered, but do not hesitate to contact us again at any time so that we may offer our support and guidance.

Following the death, the Hospital will advise you to contact the Bereavement Office, the next working day. The staff there will be able to advise when the Doctor will issue The Medical Certificate of Cause of Death and when this will be ready for you to collect. We can then talk you through the next steps and advise on registration. Once the death has been registered, we are able to transfer your loved one into our care.

If the death is unexpected or very sudden – the Coroner will be involved

Sudden Death at Home

In many cases for a sudden death at home, paramedics (called as an emergency) will certify the death. They will issue a “notification and report” of the death, they will then advise that you may contact a funeral director.

Once again, it is your decision to contact us when you and your family wish the transfer into our care to take place.

If the police are involved and contact a funeral director for you, this is likely to be a company that is contracted to the Coroner. Please be assured that this is to limit the police having to add further pressure or ask questions at this difficult time and your loved one will be transferred to a safe resting place.

However, you and your family have the right to appoint a funeral director of your choice to help with the arrangements, therefore when you are able to think a little clearer, you may decide to contact us for advice and support and we can liaise with the Coroner and the contract funeral director on your behalf.

Sudden Death in Hospital

It is highly likely that the death will be referred to the Coroner.

Again, the staff at the Hospital Bereavement Office will advise and explain Coroner’s procedures to you. Again, do not hesitate to contact us so that we may provide additional support and guidance to you and your family.