Losing someone you love is never easy but should a person close to you pass away overseas, the situation becomes more complicated. Bringing your loved one home for a funeral in Perth or a cremation service can be overwhelming during this time of grief, so here is a clear guide on the steps to arrange a repatriation back to Australia.
What is repatriation?
Repatriation when related to death means the transportation of the deceased, be it their body or ashes, to a different country. Finding experienced and compassionate repatriation services in Perth can be extremely helpful when navigating this field that is unknown to most.
The length of time for a repatriation to take place varies greatly, as it depends on the cause of death, the other country involved in the repatriation as well as a number of logistical matters. In an extremely straight forward situation, it can be resolved in 1-2 weeks, but many times it can take up to a month for the whole process to be completed.
Contact the authorities and local Embassy
The local regulations in the country your loved one died in will affect the exact steps to take, and the repatriation time. Contact local authorities immediately to get things underway, and it can be a good idea to get in touch with the local Australian Embassy to acquire niche assistance from within the country in question. They can also act as go-betweens with authorities, and provide key updates while you are considering funerals in Perth. It is also usually necessary to contact a funeral home there as they will assist with the repatriation from their end.
You will need to register the death within the country the deceased is in. The required details may vary, and a consulate connection can help clarify what is needed. Typically, the main information of the deceased focuses on:
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Next of kin
- Passport number
- Country of passport and date of issue.
Look at the travel insurance policy
It is always a good idea to review the travel insurance policy of your loved one who has passed away. Repatriation is typically expensive, but certain costs may be covered by insurance, depending on the cover in place. Review the details carefully, as while travel may not be covered, certain expenses for funerals in Perth may be.
Find a repatriation provider
Working with an experienced repatriation provider can not only ensure a smooth, efficient process, it will almost certainly reduce the stress and uncertainty you are facing while dealing with the loss of a loved one. After selecting repatriation services in Perth, your provider can liaise with a local funeral director in the overseas country, to look after the body until repatriation.
They will also be responsible for gathering key documents for the process to go ahead:
- Local death certificate (translated to English where applicable)
- Passport of the deceased
- Permission from authorities to remove the body (both Government and health departments)
- Embalming certificate (embalming is required on international flights)
- Confirmation from the airline
- Any medical letters
Once the repatriation is confirmed you can begin to make arrangements locally for a funeral or cremation ceremony. Your funeral director will be able to guide and assist you with the necessary arrangements.
Repatriations services in Perth
Working closely with families dealing with devastating loss and grief is a role we take very seriously at Hetherington Funerals. We understand the stress and confusion that can surround the death of a loved one overseas, and are here to help in any way we can. Don’t hesitate to get in touch today with any queries you may have.