When a death occurs, most people are at a loss regarding what must be done and in what order to do it. The following information is offered to help you while dealing with your loss or to be used as a guide in preparation for a pending death. Things you need to do as soon as possible:
Things to take to the funeral home:
Many institutions and benefit programs require a certified copy of the Death Certificate for business transactions.
A Social Security death benefit is only paid to a surviving spouse, unless there are special circumstances. Benefits are NOT paid automatically. If you believe you qualify for benefits, contact your Social Security field office immediately. Depending upon the type of benefits for which you are applying, some of the following records may be required:
The funeral home should notify Social Security of the death by filing FORM SSA-721. However, the family must follow up to determine if any additional benefits are due. Refer to the Social Security Administration website for information regarding death benefits- www.ssa.gov/pgm/survivors.htm
Veterans with an honorable discharge are entitled to various benefits, depending on the status of the veteran. Veterans' benefits will NOT be paid automatically. Review the Veterans Association website, www.cem.va.gov/ , for information regarding veterans benefits.