The death of a loved one can be stressful for family and friends. Furthermore, the stress can be compounded when the death occurs overseas since the body must be repatriated back to Australia for the final rights. However, with the help of a funeral director, you can remove the stress out of the repatriation process. Here are fundamental aspects that beginners should know about repatriating a deceased from a foreign country into Australia.
1. Contacting Authorities
When a loved one dies overseas, you are likely to be informed about the death by the Australian embassy, consulate, or high commission office in the respective country. However, in some circumstances, such authorities might not be aware of the death. Therefore, when a travelling companion or friend of the deceased delivers such information to you, you must quickly inform the Australian mission overseas or home office for further advice. The mission will offer assistance, including referrals to funeral directors in the country where the loved one died. Overall, the embassy will provide administrative assistance, which means that you have to deal with other repatriation procedures on your own.
2. Work with Two Funeral Directors
Repatriating a loved one calls for the services of two funeral homes—one abroad and the other in Australia. Some funeral homes in Australia can offer repatriation services by coordinating with the other funeral home to make sure that the remains of your loved one arrive in time in readiness for either cremation or burial. The funeral home abroad will prepare all documents such as permits, consular approvals, airline confirmation, death certificates, and health department approvals in readiness for the trip. Also, the funeral home will coordinate with the receiving funeral home to take custody of the deceased on arrival. Notably, a deceased must be embalmed before being transported in a coffin.
3. Understand the Costs
The cost of repatriating a deceased person can be very high. If your preferred funeral director deals in repatriation, they can coordinate with family, friends, and authorities to find out if a travel health insurance policy covered the deceased. Such a policy might take care of the repatriation expenses of a deceased. A funeral director will liaise with an insurer to make sure that other administrative costs are paid for in full before a body is repatriated back to Australia. However, without an insurance policy, relatives of a deceased person have to pay the cost of bringing the body into the country. If some family members wish to travel abroad to accompany the body back, which might not be necessary, the cost of repatriation may rise significantly.
Learn more about international repatriations by contacting local funeral directors.