Coroner Service Family Resources

Grief following the death of a family member is often complicated by the administrative tasks associated with death-care planning and managing the estate. This what to do when someone dies checklist from the Government of BC will assist you in identifying the tasks you may need to complete and the resources available to support you through this process. The checklist includes information about what to do in the first days and weeks following a death (pages 1-6) and resources that may help you obtain financial assistance in death care planning (pages 4, 10 and 11).

If the your family member was a unionized employee, their collective agreement may entitle you to collect death benefits. Contact their union for more information.

Additional resources for obtaining financial assistance can be found below:

National Defense and the Canadian Armed Forces
Toll free: 1-800-883-6094
The coordination of military funeral and burial arrangements for currently serving members on paid service is the responsibility of the unit. Financial assistance may be available for funeral and burial costs, as well as next of kin travel arrangements.

Coping with Grief

BC Bereavement Helpline
Toll free: 1-877-779-2223
A non-profit, free, and confidential service that connects the public to grief support services within the province of BC, including support groups for people who have been bereaved by suicide and homicide. Information about coping with grief, as well as local support groups and events, can be found on their website.

BC Association of Clinical Counsellors
Toll free: 1-800-909-6303
A professional association responsible for regulating the standards and practice of its registered clinical counselors. Access their database to find a counsellor near you.

BC Centre on Substance Use
A provincial organization that promotes research, education and training, and clinical care guidance regarding the treatment of substance use and addiction. The BCCSU also developed a grief handbook, in collaboration with BC Bereavement Helpline and BC Coroners Services, to offer specific support to people grieving the loss of a family member by drug overdose.

Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention
CASP hosts an annual conference to discuss topics related to suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention. They also provide information regarding resources to support people who are touched by suicide. A list of Survivor Support Centres is available along with compassionate information for people have been bereaved by suicide.

Crisis Line Association of BC
A non-profit provincial association representing member crisis lines from across BC. Their website has information to help you to locate crisis lines to receive free and confidential emotional support and community referrals.

Toll free: 1-800-563-0808
TTY: 604-875-0885; call collect at 711
VictimLinkBC is a confidential, multilingual telephone service that provides immediate crisis support and information and referral services to victims of crime 24/7. If you’re not sure if you’ve been a victim of crime, you can still call for assistance.

Legal Assistance

If you are requiring legal advice, the following resources may be of assistance.

Access Pro Bono
Toll free: 1-877-762-6664
Access Pro Bono provides free legal services for those who qualify based on low income.

Canadian Bar Association British Columbia Branch
Toll free: 1-800-663-1919
The Canadian Bar Association British Columbia Branch (CBABC) Lawyer Referral Service (LRS) provides the public with access to a 30 minute consultation with a lawyer to determine your legal needs for a fee of $25 plus taxes. If you need legal advice, the LRS can help you find a lawyer at their regular rate.

Legal Services Society
Toll free: 1-866-577-2525
Legal Services Society provides legal information and advice to people with low income.