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Immediate Arrangements

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Taking care of your loved one’s pet

It can feel challenging to make arrangements for your loved one’s pets while you yourself are grieving. However, this creature who was once dependent on your loved one is now dependent on you, and it is important to prioritize their wellbeing.

The first few days

Right after someone close to you passes away, there will be a lot of intense or confusing emotions, and a lot of tasks that need doing that can seem totally out of step with how you are feeling. That's completely normal, and OK.

Thinking ahead: Death certificates

Ordering death certificates may be the last thing you want to think about after losing your loved one; however, it’s an essential step in settling affairs. Obtaining 24 to 36 of these documents now will save you time and energy in the future.

Soon after a loved one’s passing, there are some time-sensitive tasks that will need to be taken care of. Many things can wait until you’re more ready, but there are a few that will need attention quickly. We’re here to guide you every step of the way.

MORE ARTICLES ABOUT Immediate Arrangements

Loss is hard. Its vocabulary shouldn’t be.

We speak the specialized language of estates and funerals so you don’t have to.


The person appointed by the court to handle the estate of someone who dies without a will.

The duties of an administrator are similar to those of an executor, but as there is no will to execute, he or she is named administrator and distributes assets according to a procedure dictated by state law.


The sum total of someone’s net worth, including all assets. From a legal standpoint, an estate is not simply everything the person owns, but the value of all of these assets minus any debts or other liabilities. Estates are calculated differently depending on their purpose.
For example, the taxable estate may include assets that are not in the probate estate.


A service held to commemorate someone’s life. Memorials are generally considered distinct from funerals in that they are held without the body present and are not focused on the burial, although services where the urn with the loved one’s ashes is present are also called memorials. Traditionally, a funeral is a more formal service while memorials are often more unstructured.

To see the full glossary