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Welcome to the Bordeaux & South-West France Branch of The Royal British Legion

 

INTRODUCTION TO A PRACTICAL GUIDE BEFORE / AFTER BEREAVEMENT

From Paul Phillips MBE

 

Have you thought of or talked about?

 

1. Funeral Arrangements (costs).

 

2. Financial Organisation (pensions, income, bank accounts).

 

3. Inheritance (wills, testament, children of former alliances).

 

4. Associated Financial Arrangements (insurance).

 

5. Associations, Charities e.g. a. Ex services, Royal British Legion.

 

b. Association Franco-Britannique, 87440 Marval.

 

c. British Consul, Bordeaux.

 

 

 

GUIDE PRACTIQUE EN ANGLAIS APRÈS UN DEUIL

 

1. L'organisation des Obsèques.

 

2. L'organisation des Finances.

 

3. L'héritage.

 

4. Dispositions Financières Associées.

 

5. Aides/Assistances.

 

Practical Guide Following a Bereavement

 

The death of a close family member entails a series of administrative steps which are essential to follow very rapidly in order to ensure pension/benefit claims.

 

Faced with the complexity of this process at such a difficult and taxing time, it should be helpful to consult the following guidelines: -

 

Obligations

 

  1. The Death Certificate (Certificat de Décès): This is established by a Doctor (Médecin).

 

2. The Declaration of Death: This MUST be carried out within 24 hours after the death, at the Mairie (Town Hall) where the death occurred. The Funeral Directorscan be mandated to carry out this procedure. Certain documents are needed:-

a) Your identity card/passport.

b) The death certificate.

c) All identity papers concerning the deceased: identity card/passport, birth certificate, marriage certificate, etc. The Mairie (Town Hall) will then issue an Act of Death (Acte de Décès). Always ask for at least 12 – 15 copies as they will be needed to inform all the different organisations concerned.

 

3. Transfer of the Body:In the event of a death in a public hospital, the deceased is transferred to the mortuary and then arrangements must be made with a Funeral Director of your choice for the transfer to a funeral parlour. This MUST be carried out within 48 hours and the Funeral Director should inform the communes concerned of this transfer. If the body is to be transferred abroad, the relevant papers MUST be obtained from the Prefecture where the death occurred. The same applies after a cremation for the transfer of the ashes.

 

4. The Burial or Cremation Permit (Autorisation d'Inhumation ou de Crémation): This is issued by the Mairie of the commune where the coffin is to be sealed. Certain documents are needed: -

a) Medical Certificate (Certificat Médical).

b) Declaration of Death (Déclaration du Décès).

  1. Authorisation for the Sealing of the Coffin (Fermeture du Cercueil).

 

 

 

The Burial/Cremation

 

This MUST take place between 24 hours and 6 days after the death, taking into account the wishes of the deceased and organised most often by the Funeral Directors. Your own input is expected for the celebration of your choice. Contact the relevant person at the local church, before the burial, or cremation. Arrangements for a celebration at the crematorium are left to you and you should expect a slot of about 15 minutes.

 

Your Funeral Director will ask you to choose the coffin and draperies and please remember to ask about the cost.

 

The coffin will be sealed in the presence of a member of the Local Council before departure for burial or cremation and you will be asked if the deceased was fitted with a pacemaker.

 

Remember that the deceased may have taken out insurance to cover funeral expenses and this may mean that the bill can be dealt with directly. British Pension Services may be able to help with a bereavement payment for people of pensionable age.

 

Informing Friends

 

In collaboration with the Funeral Director, death notices and funeral arrangements may be published in local newspapers.

 

Recap of Steps to Take

 

Important: - No benefits will be automatically granted, you MUST always make the request. Not respecting the time limits may mean loss of certain benefits. Inform the different agencies by Registered Letter (lettre recommandée avec accusé de réception), attaching a death certificate. Always keep a copy.

 

First Week Inform:-

 

1. Employer or unemployment office.

2. Banks (within 8 days).

a. Personal accounts in the deceased's name only are blocked until the succession has been organised by the Notaire.

b. Joint accounts are left open.

3. Insurance Companies.

4. Notaire – Make an appointment to organise succession.

5. Tenants – If deceased was a landlord.

6. Landlord – If deceased was a tenant.

 

First Month Inform

 

1. Caisse Primaire (Primary Healthcare Organisation – e.g. CPAM, RAM etc.) to ensure continuing health cover. Include a photocopy of Carte Vitale of deceased.

 

2. Social Security. A surviving spouse may be entitled to a bereavement payment but only if this payment does not come from UK Pension Service where the deceased was receiving a UK State Pension. In this case, also inform the UK State Pension Service requesting a bereavement payment.

 

3. Your local Mairie should be able to provide you with an internationally accepted death certificate. As above, ask for a good number of copies to send to UK banks, insurance companies, etc.

 

4. Contact the Notaire to organise the settlement of the estate. You have 6 months to organise the Declaration of the Succession, but you may need a Certificate of Succession for a vehicle sale or for the sale of a house. The Notaire is required to carry out the following “Actes“, not necessarily straight away, so the costs may be spread out: -

a) “Procès verbal d'ouverture et dépôt de testament“ – a French translation and copy of the English will and grant of probate are sent to the relevant Tribunal.

b) “Acte de Notoriété“ – statement of deceased and beneficiaries (often required by the French banks).

c) “Attestation de Propriété– transfers the deceased's share in property to the beneficiary (cost depends on value of property). There is no hurry for this as it is only necessary for a sale.

 

d) “Declaration de Succession“ – this is a tax declaration which should be done within 6 months of the death.

 

  1. Inform any credit agencies in the case of loans, mortgages, etc. and check whether there was an attached life insurance.

 

Following 6 Months

 

1. Inform the Family Benefit Agency (CAF).

 

2. Inform the Tax Office (Centre des Impôts). You need to provide them with: -

a) Declaration of revenues (income tax return).

b) Declaration of Succession (Notaire).

c) TaxeFoncière.

d) Taxed'Habitation + TV Licence.

 

3. Change your bank account so that it becomes your account.

 

4. Change the car registration (Carte Grise) to your name.

 

5. Change the name on various contracts: - water, gas, electricity, telephone, internet, TV. Simply send the request accompanied by a copy of the last statement and a copy of the death certificate.

 

There are associations willing to help you at this time: -

 

1. Where the deceased was ex-services the relevant military charity or the Royal British Legion.

 

2. More information can be found on the Facebook page of the Marval Association Franco-Britannique.

 

3. Two French associations for French speakers : -

www.afif.assoc.fr

www.favec.assoc.fr

 

TABLE OF ADMINISTRATIVE FORMALITIES

When

Organisation

To Obtain

To Provide Supporting Documents

In the week following the death

Mayor

- Act of death (delivered after the funeral). Request several extracts.

 

- Certificate of Heredity (Notary or town hall).

 

 

Employer or Assedic.

Employer

- Certificate of work

- balance of any account

- Certification of presence in the company

Assedic

Bereavement payment

 

 

Death Certificate

Banking establishments and/or financial

- Change a joint account into a personal account or closure of a bank account.

 

- Life insurance

Death Certificate

 

 

 

Certificate of Heredity

In the month following the death

Office for regional health insurance

Widowhood Allowance

Death Certificate

Primary Health Insurance Fund

Right to death capital

Death Certificate

Office for family allowance

- Allowance for single parent

- Allocation for support of family

 

Death Certificate

In the quarter that follows the death

Mutual or complementary insurance

 

- Reversion of the complementary pension of the deceased

- Payment of a capitol sum on death

- Stop the payments or their modifications

- Support for funeral expenses (third party support)

 

 

 

 

Death Certificate

In the 6 months following the death

Tax office

Amount of tax owed by the deceased between 1 January of the current year and the day of death

 

 

Death Certificate

In the year that follows the death

EDF-GDF, Telephone, water, TV licence, organisation of credit, insurance, subscription journals, carte grise, owners of house

Change the name on the contract or cancel

Copy of the last invoice before the death

 

 

Death Certificate

 

ENGLISH TRANSLATION OF ATTACHED MODEL LETTER IN FRENCH

Sender

 

Addressee

Name:.......................................................................................................

First name:...............................................................................................

Relation with deceased:...........................................................................

Address:...................................................................................................

..............................................................................................................

Town:.................................................................. Postcode:.....................

Telephone:......................................... Fax:...............................................

Mobile:............................................... Email:............................................

 

Organisation/Institution :

 

Address: …..................................................

........................................................................................................................................

Town: …........................................................

Postcode: ….................................................

 

Dear Sir,

 

I am writing to inform you of the death of Mr, Mrs(1)...............................................................................................................

My (2)........................................................................................

Born................................................ (3) In ….........................................................................................................

Died …........................................... In ….........................................................................................................

 

(4) Registered with your organisation, Number …....................................................................................

Holder of an insurance contract, Number ….......................................................................................

Beneficiary of a guarantee, Number....................................................................................................

Holder of a bank account, Number ….................................................................................................

Holder of a contract, Number …..........................................................................................................

 

and I would like you to register my demand in order to benefit from the following payment(s):

 

(4) Life insurance Widow's payment

Third party funeral expenses Education payment

Reversion of pension Old age payment

Medical payment Solidarity payment

Accommodation payment Personal autonomy payment

 

Other questions (5)

................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................

 

Please inform me of other documents to include, in order to fulfil my demands. I include here a death certificate.

 

Please accept my distinguished salutations,

 

At …............................................................ Date ….................................... Signature …....................................................

 

 

(1) Name of deceased (2) Precise relationship to deceased (3) Town and postcode (4) Check appropriate boxes (5) Precise details.

Your Resumée Telephone Notes

 

Employer or Unemployment Office (Assedic)

Address:

 

 

Primary Health Caisse

Address:

 

 

Family Benefit Office

Address:

 

 

Pension Insurance

Address:

 

 

Insurance Companies

Address:

 

 

Banks

Address:

Address:

 

 

Tax Office

Address:

 

 

Solicitor (Notary)

Address:

 

 

Address:

 

 

Address:

 

 

Address:

 

 

Your Resumée

Telephone

Notes

 

Employer or Unemployment Office (Assedic)

Address:

 

 

 

Primary Health Caisse

Address:

 

 

 

Family Benefit Office

Address:

 

 

 

Pension Insurance

Address:

 

 

 

Insurance Companies

Address:

 

 

 

Banks

Address:

 

Address:

 

 

 

Tax Office

Address:

 

 

 

Tax Office

Address:

 

 

 

Solicitor (Notary)

Address:

 

 

 

Address:

 

 

 

Address:

 

 

 

Address:

 

 

 

 

  

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