STEPS TO TAKE AT THE TIME OF DEATH
Following are steps to take when the death of a loved one occurs at home, in an institution, or away from home. Please do not hesitate to call Leon L. Williamson Funeral Home immediately if you are unsure as to what to do. Our caring and compassionate staff will be available to answer your questions with immediacy and will be with you through every step of preparing for a service that is meaningful, affordable and appropriate for your loved one. You will feel comforted in knowing that we will be with you, every step of the way, when you entrust your loved one to our care. We will ensure that our services are meaningful, affordable, and appropriate for your loved one.
Anticipated Death at Home
Many people with terminal illnesses choose to spend their final days in their homes under the care of a hospice. Contact the hospice immediately if hospice staff are not in your home at the time of your loved one’s death. The hospice will take care of all of the necessary legal steps and report the death accordingly. Inform the hospice that Leon L. Williamson Funeral Home will be handling the funeral arrangements of your loved one. After receiving notification from the hospice and designated family member, our staff will come to your home to transfer your loved one to our funeral home.
Unanticipated Death at Home or Nearby
If the death of your loved one is unanticipated, it is important that you call 911 immediately. Medical personnel and the police will determine what steps will be taken at that time.
Death in an Institution
The medical staff of the hospital or nursing home that provided care to your loved one will take care of all required legal steps and report your loved one’s death accordingly. Please inform the medical staff that Leon L. Williamson Funeral Home will be handling the funeral arrangements. The hospital or nursing home will complete the paperwork to have your loved one released to our care. After we receive notification from the hospital, nursing home, and designated family member, our staff will transfer your loved one to our funeral home.
Death Out of State
If the death occurs outside of Wisconsin, contact us. We will coordinate arrangements in conjunction with a funeral home or shipping service in your vicinity to have your loved one returned by air or other methods of transportation to Milwaukee. We will receive the remains of your loved one upon arrival in Milwaukee.
AFTER YOUR LOVED ONE IS ENTRUSTED IN OUR CARE, WE WILL CALL YOU TO ARRANGE A MUTUALLY AGREED UPON TIME THAT WE MAY MEET TO DISCUSS YOUR LOVED ONE’S ARRANGEMENTS.
At Leon L. Williamson Funeral Home, we want to ensure that we provide the personal attention that you desire and deserve. We request that you call us so that we may mutually agree to a time to have a funeral arrangement conference for the purpose of conferring with you in regard to your loved one’s burial or cremation. This conference is very important to all concerned. You can expect to spend at least two hours with us; however, the amount of time that we spend together will be based upon your family’s needs. You will not be rushed. Careful attention will be given to every detail in planning your loved one’s celebration of life.
WHAT WILL BE ACCOMPLISHED DURING THE FUNERAL ARRANGEMENT CONFERENCE?
We hope to accomplish the following during the funeral arrangement conference:
• Determine the date, location, and type of services to be held.
• Assist you in the selection of products for burial (such as a caskets and vaults) or assist you in the selection of a cremation urn or container to hold your loved one’s remains if your loved one will be cremated.
• Learn about your loved one’s life so that information can be gathered, composed, and obituary and vital statistical information may be completed.
• Provide you with a written list of choices related to cost and payment options.
• Provide you with an estimated cost of funeral services and merchandise, based upon your preferences.
• If you have chosen cremation for your loved one, provide cremation authorization forms for you to complete and sign.
INFORMATION AND ITEMS THAT WILL BE NEEDED DURING THE FUNERAL ARRANGEMENT CONFERENCE
Whether planning for a burial or cremation, please be prepared to provide as much of the following information as possible to the funeral director during the funeral arrangement conference:
- First, Middle, Last, and Maiden Name of Your Loved One
- Date of Birth
- Place of Birth (City and State)
- Social Security Number
- Martial Status
- Name of Spouse
- Father’s Full Name
- Mother’s Full Maiden Name
- Education and Highest Grade Completed
- Occupations and Industries of Occupations
- Military Discharge Papers DD-214
- Recent Photograph for Cosmetic Preparation and Newspaper
- Name, Telephone Number of Person(s) Responsible for Making Arrangements
Although not expected during the conference, soon after, we will need you to provide the following if your loved will not be cremated:
- Full garments and undergarments (garments closed at the neckline and long sleeves are preferred)
- Jewelry and accessories
- Eyeglasses, if you would like your loved one to wear them during viewing
As part of our services, we will assist you in determining the number of death certificates needed and obtain certified copies of death certificates on your behalf. Certified copies of the death certificate are legal documents and are issued by the state in which the death occurred.
In addition to your own records, a certified copy of the death certificate may be required as notification of your loved one’s death for:
- Each Life Insurance Company
- Pension, IRA, or other Retirement Benefits
- Each bank where accounts are maintained
- Department of Motor Vehicles
- Probate of Will
- Final Tax Return
- Real Estate Property
- Stocks and Bonds
After you receive your death certificate(s), please contact your Social Security Office to apply for any benefits for which you may be eligible. If applying for veterans benefits, we will assist you with the application for a flag. To do so, we will need a copy of your loved one’s military discharge papers (Form DD-214).
During our funeral arrangement conference as well as after the conference, your questions will be fully answered. Our funeral directors and staff of Leon L. Williamson Funeral Home will always be available, during and after normal business hours, to respond to your immediate needs. It is important to us that you are completely satisfied with every detail that you have asked us to manage.