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Yes. You should be able to get help with funeral costs from the government if you’re on benefits.

Check your eligibility using the info below before making any funeral plans. This will help you make sure you’ll receive the money you need to help cover the costs.

Help with funeral costs for people on benefits

Funeral expenses payment

If you get benefits from the government you may be able to claim a funeral expenses payment. This is a grant from the government that’ll cover the essentials you need for a funeral.

Read our guide to the funeral expenses payment and see if you’ll be able to get help with funeral costs.

It covers:

  • Who is eligible
  • What the payment covers
  • How much you’ll receive
  • How to apply
  • How long it takes for the money to come through

Budgeting loan

A budgeting loan from the government is interest-free and could help with funeral costs if you’re on benefits. You’ll be eligible for the budgeting loan if you’ve been getting one or more of these benefits for 6 months or longer:

  • Income support
  • Income-based jobseeker’s allowance
  • Income-related employment and support allowance
  • Pension credit

You’re not eligible for the budgeting loan if:

  • You receive universal credit
  • You’re on strike or involved in a walkout
  • You receive the new style jobseekers allowance or new style employment and support allowance
  • You already owe £1,500 or more for previous budgeting loans or crisis loans from the government

You’ll only have to pay back what you borrow. This will be taken from your benefits automatically. Your automatic repayments will be based on what’s affordable for you but you’ll need to pay it back within 2 years.

You can apply online or using the paper form SF500.

Are there any other ways to claim funeral costs from DWP?

Bereavement support payment

Whether you’re on benefits or not, you might be eligible for the bereavement support payment. To receive the payment you must have been under the state pension age when your partner passed away.

You can apply for the payment if your partner:

  • Paid national insurance for at least 25 weeks in one tax year
  • Or if they passed away because of an accident at work or disease caused by work

You may be able to get the payment if your partner died in the last 21 months but it’s important to make the claim as soon as possible. If you claim within 3 months of your partner’s death you should be able to get the full amount.

For more info on whether you can make this claim to help with funeral costs, visit your local Job Centre Plus or call the bereavement service helpline on 0800 151 2012.

Children’s funeral fund for England

You can get help with funeral costs for a child whether you’re on benefits or not. Your income or your savings won’t affect what you get either. To be eligible, you must hold the burial or cremation in England. If you live in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland this financial support is not available. But if you live in Wales you don’t need to pay any fees for the burial or cremation of a child.

The Children’s Funeral Fund for England covers the cost of:

  • Burial fees or cremation fees
  • Doctor’s certificate
  • Coffin (up to £300)

The fund does not cover the cost of any other funeral director services or any optional extras such as flowers. 

If you’re using a funeral director you don’t need to make any claims yourself. They will cover the cost of the burial or cremation and the coffin and claim back the costs later. If you don’t use a funeral director, the burial site or crematorium can cover the costs but you’ll need to make a claim online for the cost of the coffin.

Find more help with funeral costs

Help with funeral costs for someone on benefits can make a big difference. It could help ease some of your worries about budgeting and make planning the funeral easier.

  • Look into charities who can help – a number of charities offer support with funeral costs. Based on your individual circumstances you may be able to claim some money to help you.
  • Find support for pensioners – if you’re over state pension age, you could be eligible for other help towards funeral costs for pensioners.
  • Shop around for a funeral director – it’s a good idea to get quotes from several different people as it may save you money. Our funeral director finder makes it easy to find local funeral directors and compare prices.


Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash