1. Call us at 877-801-8168 as soon as death is confirmed
When a death occurs, call the Cremation Society of New England immediately. We’ll ask a few simple questions about who has died and where the death took place. We’ll also need the name of the next-of-kin and who made the pronouncement of death. We can then send our team to transfer your loved one, usually an hour or two after receiving your call.
Depending on the circumstance of death, you may have to call other officials as well:
- Death in a health care facility
If your loved one dies in a hospital, hospice or nursing home, instruct the staff to call us directly. They’ll make sure the authorities are notified if necessary, and they’ll provide us with the doctor’s information so that we can bring your loved one into our care.
- Anticipated death at home
If death is expected very soon, many people prefer to leave their health care facility and return home for hospice care. When death does take place, you must first call the hospice staff that was providing treatment. They will report the death officially, then contact us to collect your loved one.
- Unexpected death
If death was not expected and did not occur in a health care facility, call 911 right away. The local police will arrive and then call the Medical Examiner (ME). If the death seems non-suspicious, the ME must decide whether an autopsy is required. If it is, the ME will take the body back to their offices in Farmington. If it isn’t, you can call us immediately and we will collect the body.
If the death seems suspicious, however, the ME is obliged to carry out an autopsy. Once the autopsy is done, will collect the body from their offices in Farmington. Connecticut law states that the ME doesn’t need the family’s permission to carry out an autopsy, although their wishes will be considered as long as they don’t conflict with the ME’s legal duties.
- Death occurs away from home
If death takes place in the USA but outside of Connecticut, call us at 877-801-8168. If you call a local funeral director where the death took place, you will end up paying for their services and ours, and that’s an unnecessary cost. If death takes place in another country, it is still a good idea to call us. We can offer guidance and, if your loved one has our Death Away From Home Plan, we’ll ensure the body is transported back to Connecticut at no extra cost.
2. Arrange and pay for the cremation using our online service
Your next step is to arrange the cremation. Our online service makes this very easy. Just select select our simple, affordable cremation package, enter your contact information and credit card details (we accept all major credit cards), and click the ‘Submit Order’ button.
As soon as you have purchased the cremation, we’ll email you confirmation and instructions regarding the legal forms you need to complete.
3. Fill out, sign and return the authorization forms
The next step is to complete two legal documents: The Connecticut Cremation Permit and the Cremation & Disposition Authorization Form. You need to sign and return these forms to us within two of days of your loved one coming into our care. We cannot go ahead with the cremation unless we have these forms. Delays in returning these forms to us result in a fee for extended refrigeration of $95 per day or portion there of after 72 hours.
This Vital Statistics Form lets us file for the death certificate, and the Connecticut Cremation Permit gives us permission to carry out the cremation. Just download the forms from our website, fill them out, sign them and return them to us.
Connecticut law states that cremation cannot take place until 48 hours after death. We usually carry out a cremation within 3-4 days of receiving an order placed online.
4. Inform friends, relatives and organizations
One of the hardest things you’ll have to do is inform family, friends and others. It may be a good idea to ask a handful of people to spread the news among your wider circle for you.
You’ll also need to contact some organizations very quickly. The main ones to call in the immediate days after death are:
- Social Security Administration (to report death, stop checks and claim survivor’s benefits)
- Current employer (to notify of death, arrange final salary and ask about benefits).
- US Department of Veterans Affairs (if your loved one was a veteran, funeral allowances may be available)
- Defense Finance and Accounting Service (if your loved one was retired military, you need to report the death and arrange survivor’s benefits)
- Your attorney (to assist with estate settlement and other legal matters)
One of the best ways to notify people of a death is by placing an obituary in local newspapers. You may want to read these tips for writing an obituary. We can supply you with a list of local newspapers that publish obituaries. We publish electronic obituaries on our site as a courtesy.
5. Receive delivery of the ashes
Once the cremation has been carried out, we’ll put the ashes in the urn that you selected for release to the party specified on the Cremation Permit. Alternatively, you can request that we deliver them to you within our service area using a trusted courier. For your security, we always will request a photo ID upon delivery. We can also ship the ashes to another address outside our service area and within continental USA for an additional charge.
If you have any questions about what to do when a death occurs in your family, please call us at 877-801-8168. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.