Everyone should have a ‘When I die’ document. And here’s how to create yours. Posted on July 17, 2020July 17, 2020 by Peter Meadows What I saw on the desktop of my friend’s computer stopped me in my tracks. It was nothing raunchy or inappropriate. But simply a file folder labelled ‘When I die’. My first thought was, ‘How morbid and inappropriate’. After all, he was in good health and it would likely be many years before his bucket was kicked and clogs popped. But then came my second thought – as vivid memories came of those I know who would have loved their other half to have been this thoughtful. And not left stranded and confused at a time when grief made thinking and sorting a major challenge. More than that, such information could even be needed well before death opens its door. Such as at a time of serious illness when everything has to be in the hands of others. As a result, I went home and created my own When I Die’ file. Right now it is printed out and, with my will, birth and marriage certificates, in a place where those who need it know where to find it. If I had a funeral insurance plan the details would be there too along with contact details for the undertaker. On reflection, though seemingly gloomy, this is one of the most loving and thoughtful things I could do for those I love the most. And if you have not yet done the same here’s my own check list that could also be yours. The main document Finance: This covers – The name and contact details of your executor and solicitor Who to contact, and how, regarding savings, investments and pension Bank card pins Login and security for online banking Home stuff: Where to find details of – Car, home and travel insurance Receipts, instructions and guarantees for purchased items Computer log in and passwords: These include – Mobile phone Utilities – gas, electricity and water Email account Social media Loyalty cards Apple ID Skype PayPal Etc This sensitive information is going to be on a document held on your computer. So you may want to use an online password manager to collect them all and then add the master password to the document by hand. Trustworthy password managers include Dashlane and RememBear. Helpful info: It may also be helpful to others to have the following all in one place – NHS number Passport number NIE number Driving licence number Funeral plans I wouldn’t dare to tell anyone else what to say about their own funeral. But am happy to share my own thoughts – especially as I’ve seen well-intentioned requests becoming a burden when there were already too many weights to be carried. So although I’d love to ask for everyone to be dressed in blue and white and for my ashes to be scattered on the centre circle at Stamford Bridge, I’ve gone for a more reasonable approach. What I want my family to know is that whatever they do to mark my passing, I will not be there. So it is not about making me happy but meeting their needs. That said, in the hope it saves my loved ones from hours of hand-wringing and ‘what would Peter want?’, I’ve made a few suggestions to help them on their way should they choose to follow them. Things like ‘buried or cremated?’ and a song or two that might work. But that’s it. Is there anything you would add to this list? Or lesson learned from the death of someone close? Please tell all either here or on the AfterWorkNet Facebook community Peter Meadows Peter is AfterWorkNet’s Programme Director. He’s using his retirement to help churches, resource inter-church initiatives, and escapes to Spain when he can.