Working out what to do first when someone dies can always seem overwhelming.  You will need to:

Medical Certificate

You will need to do this immediately unless there is an inquest (the certificate is issued after this), there is no cost for the certificate.

  • If the person died in hospital, the hospital will provide you with this.
  • If the person has died at home, you should call the person’s Doctor.

Register the Death

All deaths occurring in Scotland must be registered within 8 days of their occurrence.  You will need to attend, in person, one of the six Registration Offices within the Stirling Council area to obtain a Death Certificate

The first Death Certificate is free however, to obtain a copy there is an associated fee.    

Arranging the Funeral

Once you have registered the death, you can begin to arrange the funeral.  The deceased may already have a Funeral Plan in place, or their wishes outlined within a Will or Testament

It is most likely that you will appoint a Funeral Director, but it’s also possible to arrange the funeral yourself.  Advice on what you may need to arrange is on our Arranging a Funeral pages.   

Sending Notifications of Death

As well as letting friends and loved ones know, there are many organisations you need to notify when a person passes away.  You should do this as soon as possible after receiving the death certificate. 

Some agencies/companies may require you to attend in person, but you should initially call or visit their website where they may have an online form that you can complete.  It will be necessary to supply an official copy of the death certificate or return original documents to them, and give details of the Executor or Administrator of the Estate.     

Government Departments

You can use our Tell Us Once service to notify the below Government Departments at the same time:

  • Passport Office to cancel their passport.  You will be required to return the persons Passport to Her Majesty's Passport Office (HMPO). 
  • HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) for their taxes.
  • Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to stop their State Pension and benefits.
  • Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) to cancel their driving license, car tax and car registration documents.
  • Local Council for their Council Tax, electoral register and other housing benefits.
  • Public sector or armed forces pension scheme for their pension.

Creditors, Insurers and Other Organisations 

The person who died might have had outstanding debts or payment arrangements with companies that need to be settled.  How you sort out the person’s financial affairs will depend on whether or not they have made a Will or Testament.

This list is made as a guide but there may be other services or subscriptions that will need notification:

  • Employer(s).
  • The persons Landlord or Housing Association.  If the person was a joint tenant it will be necessary to arrange a change in tenancy. 
  • Mortgage provider.
  • Utility Providers.
  • Insurance companies (vehicle, home, life etc.).
  • Credit Card companies.
  • Bank or Building Society.
  • Pension provider.

Digital Legacy

As social media and online activity is more common in daily life, you will need to consider any digital assets that have been left.  Unless this has been described in the Will and Testament, you may have to contact hosts or providers to cancel or memorialise the persons digital estate.  This can include a range of on line services:

  • Social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Reddit.
  • Financial or banking applications including PayPal and Amazon. 
  • Email accounts such as Google, Hotmail, and Yahoo.
  • Media sites such as Netflix, YouTube or Amazon Prime. 
  • Shopping sites.

Last updated: Tuesday, January 26, 2021 2:53 PM