What to do When Death Occurs
Remember that you are not alone.
When a death occurs in your family, you will be faced with important tasks and decision-making during a very difficult time. You may not know what to do or when to begin making arrangements. This responsibility can be overwhelming. Remember, you are not alone. Dalcamo Funeral Home is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to assist with plans and giving guidance through this difficult time. The following list to help guide you through the steps that will need to be taken when a death has occurred. The funeral director will help manage all of the details at the time you meet to make arrangements.
- After a death has occurred, notify Dalcamo Funeral Home by calling 312-842-8681.
The following are some questions that we may ask when you call:
- What is the full name of the deceased?
- What is the location of the deceased (Hospital, Nursing Facility or Residence)?
- What is your name, address and telephone number?
- What is the name, address and phone number of the next-of-kin?
- Is there a pre-arranged funeral plan?
We will then set a time for you to come to the funeral home to complete arrangements for the services. We will ask you to have the following information and bring that are necessary to complete the arrangement:
- Social security number of the deceased
- The deceased’s birth date and city and state of birth
- The deceased parents’ names, including mother’s maiden name
- Information about the deceased’s education
- Marital status of the deceased
- Veteran’s discharge papers
- A recent photograph of the deceased
- Pre-arrangement paperwork (if applicable)
- Cemetery lot information (if applicable)
- Clothing for the deceased
- Contact your clergy. Decide on a time and place for the funeral or memorial service (the services may be held at the funeral home).
- The funeral home will assist you in determining the number of copies of the death certificates that you will need and will order them for you
- Make a list of family, friends and business colleagues, and notify each by phone. You may wish to use a “branching” system: make a few phone calls to other relatives or friends and ask each of them to make a phone call or two to specific people.
- Decide on an appropriate charity if you so desire, to which gifts may be made (church, hospice, library, organizations, schools).
- Gather obituary information, including a photo, age, place of birth, cause of death, occupation, college degrees, memberships held, military service, outstanding work and a list of survivors in the immediate family. Include the time and place of the funeral services. The funeral home will usually write the obituary and submit it to the newspaper(s).
- If Social Security checks are deposited automatically, notify the bank of the death.
- Arrange for child care, if necessary.
- Arrange hospitality for visiting relatives and friends.
- Select pallbearers and notify the funeral home. (People with heart or back difficulties may be named honorary pallbearers)
- Prepare “Thank You” cards to people for received gifts, flowers, calls, etc.
- Notify insurance companies of the death.
- Locate the will and notify the lawyer and executor.
- Carefully check all life and casualty insurance and death benefits, including Social Security, credit union, trade union, fraternal, and military. Check on possible income for survivors from these sources.
- Check promptly on all debts and installment payments, including credit cards. Some may carry insurance clauses that will cancel them. If there is to be a delay in meeting payments, consult with creditors and ask for more time before the payments are due.
- If the deceased was living alone, notify the utility companies and landlord and tell the post office where to send the mail.