After the funeral Whitestone Funerals electronically registers the death of the person who has died. Following this online registration, Births, Deaths and Marriages processes it and posts the death certificate to us, usually within five to ten working days. We forward the death certificate directly to you or to the solicitor who is dealing with the estate.
We are legally required to include certain information when registering a death. We obtain this information from you while making the funeral arrangements with you. It is important that this information is accurate as far as possible.
If the death has been referred to the Coroner, you will notice the words ‘subject to coroner’s findings’ in the cause of death section. This means that the official cause of death was not available at the time we registered the death. It is possible to update the death certificate once the Coroner has concluded his or her enquiries and ascertained the cause of death.
Probate (a term coming from a Latin word meaning ‘proof ’) is the procedure by which the courts recognise a will as authentic.
The executors of the will must obtain probate from the court so that they have authority to deal with assets (and liabilities) of the person who has died and to enable distribution of the estate in accordance with the will. The Registrar of the High Court carries out probate after receiving an application from the executors. This task involves establishing that it was in fact the testator (the maker of the will) who died, that the will was properly signed and attested, and that executors have been appointed.
For advice on estate matters we would recommend that you contact your solicitor or an organisation such as the Public Trust.
MEMORIALS AND THE MONUMENTAL WORK
Whitestone Funerals can provide advice and assistance regarding the selection and purchase of granite, brass, bronze and Returned Services plaques. We can arrange for new headstones and memorials and the addition of inscriptions and refurbishment of existing monuments.
Families that we have cared for, along with members of the public, are invited to join us at our chapel for a Christmas Service of Remembrance. It will be held in late November or early December. These types of services can offer great comfort during an often difficult time of year after losing someone important in your life. It offers a chance to gather and remember.
THE FUNERAL ACCOUNT
Every funeral invoice from Whitestone Funerals is individualised. It will generally include professional service fees, mortuary services, vehicle transfers, and a casket. Other items may be included and will be itemised such as crematorium and cemetery fees, ashes and memorial fees, doctor’s fees, newspaper notices, flowers, printing, catering, a death certificate, gratuities and donations, multimedia and audiovisual, and monumental options.
With every funeral we will give you an estimate of the costs of the funeral that you have arranged with your funeral director.
THE PAYMENT DUE DATE
On the Wednesday after the funeral we send the itemised funeral account to the address that you have indicated as appropriate. The Due Date for payment, which will be indicated on the invoice, will be three (3) weeks from the day the funeral account is sent. We will send you a reminder statement seven (7) days prior to the Due Date. An account finance charge will be added when payment is not made by the Due Date. Interest may be charged on overdue accounts.
Whitestone Funerals offers a full range of services to accommodate most budgets. Please call us to discuss your specific requirements. We can advise on the range of assistance available for families requiring help with funeral costs. Assistance and advice can be given on the closing of bank accounts and applications for funeral grants from Work and Income and the Accident Compensation Corporation.
Some airlines operating in New Zealand offer compassionate airfares to immediate family members travelling to a funeral. You should check with the airline you are travelling on whether the ticket you are travelling on is able to be discounted in this way. If a discount is possible, we can supply you with a supporting letter from our company. To write our supporting letter we need the following:
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