Bereavement

We understand that registering a bereavement to us can be a difficult time and dealing with their finances can often be confusing.

At Darlington Building Society our Members are our priority and we are here to help you every step of the way.

We’re here to help and support you and your family and make any dealings with us as easy as possible.
Below is all of the information you need and what your next steps are.

Step 1 – Register the Death


If you live in England, Wales or Northern Ireland, you need to register a death within five days. If you live in Scotland, you have eight days.

You register a death at a local Registration Office. Check your local council’s website as you may need to book an appointment to do this.

If you are registering the death in the district where the person passed away, you should receive the death certificate immediately. If you register the death in another district, the death certificate may take a few days to arrive.

Generally you receive one death certificate for free when you register the death, if you need more copies, you can either:

  • Pay for extra copies at the registration office    
  • Make your own copies and have them certified.

Supporting members during the Coronavirus (COVID-19)

There may at this time be a delay in receiving a Death/Coroner’s certificate.

Rest assured this will not delay the process, and you can now register a death with the Society without the certificate by either:

  1. Completing the form here:
    Complete an online form
  2. Contacting your local branch by telephone or email:
    Branch Finder
     
  3. Posting a letter containing the following information:
  • Deceased Member’s full name
  • Date of death
  • Account number(s) held with the Society
  • Your name, address and contact telephone number

      To: Darlington Building Society, Sentinal House, Morton road, Darlington, DL1 4PT.

What happens next will depend on the services the deceased held with the Society.  Once we have the deceased’s information from you we will:

For Savings Accounts:

  • Freeze the account(s) balance, halting specific authorised transactions
  • Update internal account records
  • Cancel third party support arrangements (for example Power of Attorney).
  • Stop direct marketing to the deceased

For Mortgage accounts:

  • Update internal account record
  • Cancel third party support arrangements (for example Power of Attorney).
  • Stop direct marketing to the deceased
  • Discuss monthly mortgage payment options and provide support where required

We will write out to the bereaved family member/friend who has notified the Society of the death, to confirm we have completed the above.

Are savings funds accessible?

Before releasing funds we require the death/coroner’s certificate, and depending upon the balance(s) held within the savings account, will depend on what steps is required to release/access those funds. Please see 'Will I need Grant of Probate?' section below.

In certain circumstances the Society may be able to support you during this time by releasing funds for a funeral expense, to proceed with this request the Society will require the following information/documents to proceed:

  • Original copy of the Funeral Directors invoice (payment will only be made for the balance outstanding)
  • Proof of identification of the person who has registered the death and release of funds for the funeral
  • Signed authority form to complete the transaction
  • Passbook for the account in which the funds are to be released

A cheque will be made payable to the Funeral Director for the amount outstanding and the Society will send the cheque to the Funeral Director via 2nd class post.

 

Step 2 – Find the Will

It is important to find the last known Will as soon as possible. It will help you work out what to do next.

If you need support in finding a Will, you can search for one using the Government website.

The Will might name an Executor, who is responsible for dealing with the estate.

If there is no Will, and you are the next of kin, you may need to apply for a grant of representation to sort the estate.

If there is no Will and you want to close the account and withdraw the funds, you will need to complete a 'Statutory Declaration - No Will' form, which we can send out or provide to you in person.  Simply contact your local branch.

You may still need to apply for a grant of representation before we can release the money in the account(s), this will depend on the value of the estate.  Please refer to the 'Will I need Grant of Probate?' section below.

Will I need Grant of Probate?

To take control of the account(s) held with the Society, the process varies depending on how much money is held in the account(s). The table below provides you with information based on your circumstances, as well as any other action you need to take.

Total Balances There is a will There is no will
Below £1,500

 

We will complete a disclaimer that details you are entitled to these funds, which you will need to sign

 

 

We will complete a disclaimer that details you are entitled to these funds, which you will need to sign

 

Between £1,500 and £30,000

We will create a Statutory Declaration Form - with a Will, and provide
this to you.  Once received, you will need assistance from a solicitor.  When fully completed, please return to us with a copy of the Will, where we will be able to finalise your request.


We will pull create a Statutory Declaration Form - without a Will, and provide this to you.  Once received, you will need assistance from a solicitor.  When fully completed, please return to us with, where we will be able to finalise your request.

 

Over £30,000



You will need probate or Letters of Administration. You can talk to your solicitor about this, or click here to find out more information

https://www.gov.uk/applying-for-probate

 

You will need probate or Letters of Administration. You can talk to your solicitor about this, or click here to find out more information

https://www.gov.uk/applying-for-probate

 

Step 3 – Gather necessary documents

To support your requirements further we will need the following documents to take care of the deceased’s affairs:

  • Proof of your identity (for all Executors if applicable)
  • Death/Coroner’s Certificate (original/certified copy)
  • The Will, if there is one