What to Do First

In many instances, people do not know what to do first or who to contact when someone dies. It can depend on where and how the person dies. Greenhaven Funeral Services provides a simple guide as to what to do initially when a death occurs.

Regardless of the time or circumstances of the death, please call Greenhaven Funeral Services on (03) 9569 0534 so we can support and guide you through the process of making funeral arrangements for your loved one.

Once the doctor has confirmed the cause of death, we can start to help you make the necessary funeral arrangements in line with your wishes and those of the deceased.

Death at home

If a relative or friend dies at home, the first person you should contact is their Doctor. If the Doctor has treated the deceased in the past and can confirm the cause of death, they can issue a medical cause of death. Whilst waiting for the doctor to arrive, please call a member of the Greenhaven Funeral Services team so we can make arrangements to take the deceased into our care at the appropriate time.

Death in a hospital or nursing home

In this instance, the Director of Nursing, Sister or Nurse in Charge will be able to help you with the process and will make arrangements for the Doctor to issue a medical cause of death. Please contact us as soon as possible so we can begin liaising with the nursing home or hospital and making the necessary arrangements.

Sudden or unexpected death

If the death is sudden or accidental, or the cause of death cannot be confirmed, it is the Doctor’s responsibility to notify the police. In these cases, it is important the deceased is not moved or disturbed in any way without the authorization of the Coroner. The police will contact a government appointed funeral contractor to transfer the deceased from the place of death to the Coroner’s mortuary.

The Coroner will then investigate and determine the cause of death, which may involve a post mortem examination. This procedure may slightly delay the funeral arrangements until the necessary clearance is obtained. You have the right to choose your funeral director to take care of the deceased and attend to the funeral arrangements in line with your wishes. Please contact us as soon as possible so we can liaise with the Coroner’s Court on your behalf and make the necessary arrangements to take your loved one into our care as soon as we are able to.

Death interstate or overseas

If the death occurs away from home (interstate or overseas), you should notify us immediately so we can make arrangements to transport the deceased home and attend to any legal, statutory or customs requirements.

If your loved one’s wish was to be returned to their homeland for burial, please contact us. We are able to attend to the extensive process of contacting government departments for you and processing the necessary documentation on your behalf.

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