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Bereavement help and advice

Whatever your circumstances, losing someone close to you is a terrible experience to go through and it's understandable if you feel as if everything is getting on top of you. This section points you in the direction of other agencies who can help you.

Where to go if you need some help to cope

When someone you know or care about dies, it can be very upsetting and difficult to come to terms with, whatever the circumstances are. If you are having difficulty in coping with the loss of someone close to you, you can contact a bereavement organisation such as Cruse for specialist support and counselling in confidence. A bereavement counsellor will listen to the way you feel and help you come to terms with your loss.

You might find the following helpful, a BUPA factsheet about grieving and bereavement.

Getting help with the funeral

As if it's not hard enough to deal with your feelings, you might also find that you have to make the funeral arrangements. When someone dies, there are lots of things that have to be done, and, if you're the only person close to someone who has just died, it can be scary.

A funeral director will guide you through the process of arranging the funeral and make all the necessary arrangements. They can also help you apply for funeral payments from the social fund, if you're eligible. The person you cared for may have specified which funeral director you should contact, or friends and family may be able to recommend someone. You can read more about choosing a funeral director and search for a company near you at the National Association of Funeral Directors website.

Further information

If you don't know where to start, the Scottish Government has produced a helpful leaflet called What to do after a death. If you need any more help, you can also contact your local Citizens Advice. An adviser can explain your rights and responsibilities and help you claim any bereavement benefits you may be due.


Remember that a death in the household may also affect any benefits that are being claimed. Contact your local advice agency or benefits office for futher information.

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This content applies to Scotland only.
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