What Help is Available for Funeral Costs?

Piggy bank on wooden table

When a person dies, close family and friends don’t just have to deal with bereavement – they also have to plan a funeral. With the cost of funerals constantly rising, this can be a worry for families planning a funeral if they don’t have any savings to put towards it. The last thing you need when you’ve lost a loved one is debt and worry – so read on to find out about what financial help is possibly available.

Who is obliged to pay for the funeral?

In some instances, the deceased has made financial arrangements themselves in the form of funeral insurance or a pre-paid funeral plan. Alternatively, they may have money left in their estate which can cover the costs. In this case, the executor of the estate will take care of the funeral bills. Otherwise, it is up to the next of kin to pay for the funeral.

What if I can’t afford it?

The average funeral service now costs between £3,000 – £4,300 – and this doesn’t include elaborate extras such as flowers, extra transport or the celebration after the service. There are many people who would struggle to find the money should someone die unexpectedly. If there isn’t enough money in the deceased’s estate to pay for a funeral, and no relative or friend in a position to arrange the funeral, then there are some ways in which the government can help.

Funeral Payment

If you are on a low income or on certain benefits, you may be eligible for a government scheme known as the Funeral Payment. This is a form of financial assistance to help recently bereaved families pay for a funeral, but it doesn’t always cover the entire cost. You can apply for a Funeral Payment from the government website.

Public Health Funeral

If there is no money leftover in the estate to cover funeral costs, and a relative isn’t available to plan and pay for the funeral, then a public health funeral can be arranged by the local council. If this option is chosen you may not have the same flexibility and choice in the funeral arrangements. The funeral service is often economised and the full scope of arrangements reduced.

There are other ways to keep funeral costs down – get in touch if you need advice arranging a funeral on a budget.

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Funeral Director fees

The price quoted contains the Funeral Director fees for a simple funeral. This includes:

  • Funeral Director fees for meetings, paperwork and running the funeral
  • Collection of the deceased and care prior to funeral
  • Hearse or appropriate vehicle for transport to the funeral
  • Basic coffin

The Funeral Director fees quoted do not include third party costs (often called disbursements). The Funeral Director will guide you through your options. These costs are:

  • Cremation or burial fees
  • Medical certificate for cremation
  • Clergy or officiant fee for conducting the ceremony

In addition to the disbursements you may want to discuss optional costs with your Funeral Director - these could include:

  • Funeral flowers
  • Memorial (venue hire, catering etc)
  • Memorial headstone
  • Orders of service
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What is a Direct Cremation?

A Direct Cremation is an alternative to the traditional funeral. This involves the cremation of the deceased without a funeral service. A Direct Cremation is generally the most economic option because costs of the coffin, preparation of the body, funeral service and expensive transportation are not included. However, many people choose Direct Cremations for reasons other than expense, for example:

  • - Wanting to have a memorial at a different time to the cremation
  • - Expressed desire from the deceased to not have a ceremony
  • - Individuals with relatives who face big physical or geographical challenges in coming together for a ceremony

The prices quoted for Direct Cremations include:

  • All charges, meetings and paperwork for the cremation
  • Collection of deceased and care prior to cremation
  • A simple coffin and urn for the ashes
  • Cremation fees and delivery of ashes to the family
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Why is this price Estimated?

We work hard to ensure the Funeral Director Fees we display are accurate and up to date. However, unlike with our partners, we cannot guarantee this price is correct today.

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Funeral Choice charity donation

To redeem the £20 charity donation all you have to do is select the charity from the dropdown list in the Make Contact form. Once you have confirmed arrangements with that funeral director send us an email to [email protected] confirming the service has been arranged. After we receive this email we will make the donation to the chosen charity and confirm back to you.

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