Things to do when someone dies at home



1) Call your physician or the SAMU or SMUR services : emergency European numbers 15 or 112.


2) Obtain a Death Certificate.


3) Actions to be taken to preserve the body :

  • Place the body on a bed protected by an undersheet or an oil cloth.
  • Obstruct the anus with cotton wool.
  • Raise the head with a pillow.
  • Close shutters and windows, draw the curtains.
  • Turn off the heat in the room.
  • Light a few candles (to reduce the amount of oxygen in the room)
    Take all necessary safety precautions to avoid fire.
  • Turn off all electric lights or keep lighting to a minimum.
  • Close the door(s) to the room.


4) Report the death to the civil registrar in the town where the death occured within 24 hours.


These suggestions are in no way intended as a substitute for the services of a Funeral Home or the services of an undertaker (cleaning, clothing or eventual placement of dry ice or somatic care)

Consult the rubrics :

Choosing a Funeral home – Beware!

How to preserve the body, Thanatopraxis



Association Française d'Information Funéraire