Contact the person's doctor. A doctor must certify that death has occurred. Normally funeral arrangements cannot be completed until the doctor has signed and issued a Death Certificate. The Funeral Director can then take the deceased into their care.
In Australia the great majority of deaths occur in hospital or other care facilities, in which case those authorities take care of the medical formalities.
In certain instances it may not be legally possible for the doctor to issue a Death Certificate and there is necessity for police and coronial involvement.
Who is Responsible for Arranging a Funeral
In most instances, the Next of Kin is responsible for arranging the funeral of the deceased, for example: spouse, child, parent, legal partner or sibling.
In the instance of dispute, where it is known a Will exists, the arbiter of arrangements is deemed to be the nominated Executor. The Executor may in his/her discretion appoint a person to make necessary arrangements with a Funeral Director. Such occasions however, are infrequent and most arrangements are made by the Next of Kin.
In some cases authorities in institutions where a person may not have any known relatives may need to make necessary arrangements. This is usually done by the Social Worker or another authorised officer.
Which is More Popular - Burial or Cremation
The number of people in Australia choosing to be cremated is steadily increasing. Whilst there is some variance between states and territories, cremations now outnumber burials. Cremation funerals are much higher in city areas where crematory facilities are available. Rural and remote regions predominate in burials.
People have a choice of either burial or cremation. In certain cultures cremation is not favoured (or may be prohibited within the relevant faith belief). In other cultures the opposite may occur with cremation being the custom, for example, in the Hindu tradition.
Ultimately, this decision is a matter of personal choice. Future trends may see higher instances of cremation due to increasing limits on cemetery space within or convenient to population centres.
How Much Choice Does the Family Have in Funeral Arrangements
The family has absolute choice with certain exceptions as in the case of Coronial investigation in some murder cases, where permission may be given for a funeral by burial only.
We can volunteer options to a family but ultimately it is the family’s right to choose whatever they wish, providing necessary legal requirements are met. There may be some variation between states and territories within Australia, however, in most instances relevant Health Departments require the deceased to be placed in a coffin or casket for burial or cremation. In the case of cremation the coffin or casket must be combustible.
Again in certain states funerals may be Government assisted in the event of insufficient funds. Such funerals have limitations on choices and we will advise you accordingly.
How Much Will a Funeral Cost
The obvious and understandable question, like building a house - the answer could be almost limitless. There are certain necessary inclusions and certifications required, some of which have fixed costs, some of which are negotiable.
The concept of cremation being much less in cost than burial may not always be the case if the family already have a licence/lease for a grave which has allowed provision for further interments, in which case reopening and digging fees would apply.
A specific answer cannot be given to this question because of the scope of options available. The costs of a funeral are categorised under:
* professional service fees
* disbursements, i.e. the Funeral Director’s out of pocket expenses, and coffin or casket choice.
Just ask us and we will work with you to deliver what you and your loved one want in line with your budget.