Plan to pro­vide your loved one with a fit­ting farewell

Glamorgan Gazette - - Get Away -

COP­ING with the death of a loved one is un­de­ni­ably tough. After the shock, you’ll have to deal with sort­ing out the de­ceased’s es­tate, along­side or­gan­is­ing a funeral.

As dif­fi­cult as it seems, there are many peo­ple who can help you through this and en­sure the process runs as smoothly as pos­si­ble.

If you need help with the de­ceased’s es­tate, then a so­lic­i­tor can pro­vide the ex­per­tise re­quired.

They can pro­vide guid­ance if the de­ceased’s will can­not be found, or on how to go about the pro­bate process – which means es­tab­lish­ing the va­lid­ity of a will.

You then need to ap­ply to get a “grant of rep­re­sen­ta­tion” which pro­vides the le­gal right to ac­cess things such as the de­ceased’s bank ac­count, along­side pay­ing any In­her­i­tance Tax that’s due.

Other fi­nan­cial mat­ters to be dealt with in­clude col­lect­ing the es­tate’s as­sets – such as the money from the sale of the person’s prop­erty – and pay­ing off debts such as util­ity bills.

The de­ceased’s es­tate will then need to be dis­trib­uted, with any prop­erty, money or pos­ses­sions go­ing to the ben­e­fi­cia­ries of the will. Along­side deal­ing with the de­ceased’s es­tate, you’ll also need to look to en­gage the services of a funeral di­rec­tor.

A ba­sic funeral is likely to in­clude a plain, lined cof­fin, and the trans­porta­tion of the body to the funeral di­rec­tor’s premises where the de­ceased will be washed and dressed.

Funeral direc­tors can also pro­vide services in­clud­ing ar­rang­ing flow­ers, cater­ing ar­range­ments for the funeral and press no­tices.

If the de­ceased has cho­sen to be cre­mated, the chapels are usu­ally on the grounds of the cre­ma­to­rium.

There is the op­tion for a short cer­e­mony be­fore the cre­ma­tion.

What is to be done with the ashes may be stip­u­lated in the in­di­vid­ual’s will, or fam­ily mem­bers can de­cide how best to hon­our their loved one.

If a burial has been cho­sen, then that can take place in a church­yard, a lo­cal au­thor­ity ceme­tery or a pri­vate ceme­tery. There is also the pos­si­bil­ity of buri­als on pri­vate land, or in a woodland site. Most ceme­ter­ies are owned by lo­cal au­thor­i­ties or pri­vate com­pa­nies and are non-denom­i­na­tional although some have space ded­i­cated to par­tic­u­lar re­li­gious groups.

If you are look­ing to get a per­ma­nent me­mo­rial to your loved one, it is im­por­tant to re­mem­ber that church­yards and ceme­ter­ies have firm rules about the size and type of memo­ri­als that are al­lowed.

It is im­por­tant to check on these reg­u­la­tions be­fore or­der­ing any­thing, with Church of Eng­land church­yards usu­ally hav­ing more rules than lo­cal au­thor­ity ceme­ter­ies.

As a me­mo­rial is a last­ing mon­u­ment and a trib­ute to a person’s life, per­haps cre­ated as a fi­nal gift to some­one cher­ished, so it is very im­por­tant to choose the me­mo­rial care­fully, with con­sid­er­a­tion paid to more than cost and time.

You may wish to use a com­pany rec­om­mended by a friend or rel­a­tive.

If the burial is tak­ing place in a woodland ceme­tery, some per­mit wooden plaques but most will only al­low the plant­ing of a tree.

What­ever has been cho­sen, with care­ful plan­ning you can pro­vide your loved one with a fit­ting farewell.

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