Protecting people’s properties and assets

If a person who is taken ill or dies has no relatives able or willing to make the necessary arrangements, we will protect their property. If someone you know has died or been hospitalised, and there is no one to look after their property, contact us using the details on the right of this page to find out if we can help.

Our staff can enter a property to ascertain the extent of an estate and to remove any items or assets which may assist in funding a funeral.  If we are involved in organising the funeral, keys and any other items removed from the property must be returned to us.

After the funeral costs and administration charges, any funds in excess of £500 remaining from a person’s estate will be forwarded to the treasury solicitor.

If the Coroner is involved in investigating a death, the police will remove any valuables, money, benefit books and official documents during their investigations. Keys to the deceased’s property should not be left with neighbours or any other person but handed either to a coroner’s officer or a police officer.

For Council homes, we will fit a temporary secure door to the premises.

For more details, read the bereavement and property protection services customer charter.

Landlords’ responsibilities

If we are involved with arranging the funeral for someone who was renting their home, the landlord must:

  1. not enter the property until the Council has completed its enquiries
  2. not remove any items from the property
  3. advise us about the condition of the property, so we can make sure that it is safe for our staff to enter it

Once we have finished our enquiries, we will return the keys to the landlord, who is responsible for clearing the premises.

Protecting the property of people or are ill or in care

If a hospital or care home sends us a referral, we can protect the property of any person living in Hackney who is admitted to hospital or residential care.

This involves:

  1. ensuring the property is secure
  2. removing cash, bank books and other small valuable items for safekeeping
  3. rehoming pets or putting them in kennels (resident will be charged)
Page updated on: 23 April 2020

Bereavement and Property Protection Services


Hackney Service Centre
1 Hillman Street
E8 1DY


Opening times

  • Monday to Friday 9am - 5pm