Many people opt to hold the funeral and burial in 24 hours. The amount of time you have to make arrangements depends on the type of service you want to hold. Before making any funeral arrangements, first, need to obtain a death certificate. If the deceased passed in the hospital, this will be done automatically. If the deceased passed in the home then the general practitioner can issue the death certificate. If the autopsy needs to occur then it may take a little bit longer before the body is returned to the family.