We can help you to deal with someone’s estate, if they had an account with us. It is important that you follow the government advice when someone dies, as well as letting their bank know.
When grieving for someone, it can be hard to deal with their finances too. This guide aims to help make this as straightforward as it can be, so you can spend more time dealing with what matters most.
Obtain a death certificate
Before we can make changes to a customer's account, we need to see the death certificate. You can get this from a GP or hospital, and order extra copies from the General Register Office (GRO)
If you don’t yet have the death certificate, but want to secure the account and stop marketing you can do this by completing a Bereavement Instruction Form and sending it to us at the address below.
Until we have received this all accounts will remain open. This means that any regular payments, such as direct debits, will continue to go out of the account. As soon as you have the death certificate, please send this on to us.
Total value of accounts
The documents you need to send to us might be different depending on the total combined value of the accounts with the bank.
If the balance is less than £30,000 and a sole account we require;
If the balance is more than £30,000 and a sole account we require;
Guidance about how to correctly certify documents can be found here
*To support families of our deceased customers at this time, we are currently accepting uncertified copies of the death certificate when you first notify us. When we receive these documents, we will secure the accounts to stop payments being sent. We will still need you to send us the certified copy when it’s possible, to allow us to complete our remaining bereavement activities.
We will provide you with the account balances once we have received the bereavement instruction form and Death Certificate.
For joint accounts, we will only need the following documents;
If you don’t know what accounts the deceased held, or if they held accounts with both The Co-operative Bank and Britannia, please send the documentation to the Britannia address.
If you are posting these to us, we recommend using a trackable delivery service. These are important documents and we would hate for them to be lost. Once we’ve received them, we will aim to have them scanned and sent back out to you within the same day. Original forms of ID and address will be returned via recorded delivery. Other documents will be sent back to you via 1st Class post.
If you need help, our dedicated customer bereavement team can support and guide you through the process.
If the person who died had both Co-operative Bank/smile and Britannia accounts, use the number for the Britannia team.
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm
Saturday and Sunday 9am to 5pm
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm
Saturday, 9am to 12pm
Power of attorney privileges and third party access will cease upon date of death.
A person given power of attorney doesn’t necessarily or automatically become responsible for managing the estate of the deceased. That’s decided by what is set out in the will.
If the deceased didn’t have a will (death intestate), what happens next depends on a number of factors. These include the marital status of the deceased, what’s held with the bank and where in the UK they lived.
Please do not delay confirming the customer’s death in order to maintain power of attorney or third party privileges.
If you’re calling from the UK, calls to 0800 and 0808 numbers are free from landlines and mobiles; calls to 03 numbers cost the same as calls to numbers starting with 01 and 02; calls to 0845 and 0870 numbers cost 3p per minute, plus your phone company’s access charge; calls to 0844 and 0843 numbers cost 7p per minute, plus your phone company’s access charge. Charges for calls made outside of the UK will be determined by your local provider.
Calls may be monitored or recorded for security and training purposes.
Although not specifically related to banking, the government’s Tell Us Once service is a convenient way to notify multiple governmental departments of someone’s passing in a single go.
Aid with paying for a funeral is also available under certain circumstances. For more information, please see the gov.uk Funeral Payments webpage.