How long after a funeral is the body cremated?

Last Updated: 14th February 2022

After the funeral service, cremation usually takes place shortly after that but there may be a reason why it might not.  How long after a funeral is the body cremated might be something that the deceased’s next of kin or family question.

Some people may feel a slight feeling of abandonment towards their loved one if they have  chosen the option of cremation in that the cremation itself is not something that they physically see themselves so it might raise questions as to how long after a funeral is the body cremated.

In knowing exactly what happens when considering how long after a funeral is the body cremated, it might reassure the deceased’s family or next of kin to know that how long after a funeral is the body cremated usually takes place within a couple of hours after the funeral that cremation takes place,.

However, it is important for any person who chooses to be cremated, together with their next of kin and family, to note that if the funeral service is scheduled towards the end of the day, how long after a funeral is the body cremated can be delayed until the next day. 

This might be something the next of kin or family wish to consider, if they feel how long after a funeral is the body cremated is important and that the cremation of their loved one should be carried out as soon as possible after a funeral. 

If the cremation does not take place within hours of the funeral, written consent is required to keep the deceased’s coffin at the crematorium overnight.  It is illegal for the coffin to be opened once it enters the crematorium.

It is possible for a minimal number (possibly two) family members to attend the cremation process if they wish to and this should be kept in mind how long after a funeral is the body cremated.

With regard to timing, a number of people consider the latest timeframe of how long after a funeral is the body cremated as being 24 hours after a funeral service takes place.  It might not feel important to the next of kin or family of the deceased because this is considered procedural or process driven.

There is another reason for delay when understanding how long after a funeral is the body cremated.  If the equipment fails, that might also delay cremations taking place so will delay how long after a funeral is the body cremated.  This inevitably might cause further upset to the next of kin or family of the deceased at what is already a difficult time for them.

Alternatively, how long after a funeral is the body cremated can be drawn out in circumstances such as family disagreements in which cremation may be delayed.  As cremation can be an emotive subject, cremation, like any other option whilst planning for a funeral is best discussed before end of life so that decisions can be made by a person before they die and understood and accepted by their relatives or next of kin.

Other delays that are common to impact on how long after a funeral is the body cremated might include the incompletion of documents of the deceased.  If a doctor’s signature, for example, is not present on the death certificate how long after a funeral is the body cremated will most certainly delay the procedure of cremation taking place.

All forms necessary to be completed before cremation takes place might be delayed if a coroner is involved or there is a delay in any permits required which will, again, become a factor on how long after a funeral is the body cremated.

Therefore, it is important to ensure that, when cremation is the choice for the deceased, all documents including: a copy of the death certificate, the cremation certification, the cremation application, the medical certificates for cremation and the cremation authorisation, are present so that it shortens the time of how long after a funeral is the body cremated.  The advantage of using a funeral director to help with the final arrangements allows for the deceased’s family to feel reassured that everything necessary is in hand.

As the committal happens, at the end of a funeral service in a crematorium, and once people leave the funeral venue, the process that directly follows will help determine how long after a funeral is the body cremated. 

The coffin is moved to a Committal room, in which the identity of the deceased is checked carefully (usually, the coffin has a nameplate of the deceased) so that it can be cross checked with the cremation order to ensure the identity of the deceased person is correct before cremation takes place. 

The crematorium prepares a card which becomes the label and remains with the body, whether it is intact or in ash remains and remains with the deceased body until the ashes are returned to the next of kin or family.

There is one other consideration about how long after a funeral is the body cremated if a family wishes to have the cremated remains at the service. 

Swapping the order of cremation and funeral service around, a direct cremation could take place with a service following that, at a suitable date and time for the family of the deceased. 

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