In the event of the death of one of the spouses, the spouse who changed their name at the conclusion of the marriage may declare at any time to the civil registrar that they wish to return to their single name.
Depending on where the deceased person resided, it is also necessary to notify the municipal authorities. Especially since many Swiss municipalities offer free services for funerals (burials, cremation, funeral procession, etc.): it may therefore be wise to inquire beforehand in order to be able to benefit from these services free of charge.
Also note that it is possible to make a request to the bank of the deceased person to release funds in order to pay the expenses related to the funeral. Most establishments block accounts at the time of death (for inheritance tax purposes), but some banks may allow funds to be released.
Notification and registration of a death
A deceased person must be transported to a place of preservation. In general, following the “confirmation of death” issued by the civil registry, the municipal authority authorises the transport and burial of the deceased. The transport is carried out by a funeral director authorised by the Département de la Santé et l’action sociale (DSAS). The transport can also precede the notification to the authorities. In Switzerland, funerals must take place between 48 and 98 hours after death. Depending on the region, funerals can be organised up to 5 days after death, when the body is stored in a refrigerated room.
Switzerland hosts a wide variety of funeral rites. The organisation of the funeral will therefore greatly depend on the type of ceremony chosen, but whatever its form, the chosen ceremony will require certain basic logistics:
- Transfer of the body.
- Choice of place, date and time of the ceremony.
- List of people to invite.
- Funeral announcement (e.g. with a mortuary notice).
It is usual to call on a funeral director to be accompanied in these steps.
In fact, whether private or public (official), funeral directors can support you very early in the process and help you with administrative procedures as well as with the organisation of the funeral. They have a coordination role between the family of the deceased and the various intervening entities and can also provide services, such as mortuary washing and care of the body. The employees of funeral companies who carry out mortuary care ensure that it is carried out with respect for the dignity of the deceased person and in keeping with their cultural and religious traditions. Funeral directors are usually willing to arrange a tribute that is meaningful to you. Indeed, whatever your needs or desires in terms of funerals and whatever your beliefs, you will be able to find a funeral director whose services will be perfectly adapted to your expectations and who will be able to meet them with great attention and care, without judgment.
You will find the list of different funeral directors as well as more information on this subject on the website of the Direction Générale de la Santé.
Direction générale de la santé
Office du médecin cantonal
Avenue des Casernes 2
021 316 18 00