What Is the Government Funeral Payment Scheme?

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Losing a loved one is an incredibly trying time for everyone, regardless of their income or social background. In order that all bereaved persons can afford a simple but reverential funeral to pay their last respects to the deceased, the government has a Funeral Payment scheme which subsidises part of the costs incurred.

Whether or not you are eligible to receive financial support through the Funeral Payment system will depend entirely on your own circumstances. However, the government has made steps this year to make the process more accessible and transparent, allowing those in need to access crucial funds at the most difficult of times.

Who is eligible for the Funeral Payment Scheme?

In order to qualify for the Funeral Payment initiative, you must be able to prove that your relationship to the deceased was close enough to meet the government’s criteria, and you must be planning to hold the funeral in the UK, the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland.

Additionally, you must also already be receiving some form of financial assistance or benefit from the government. This can include:

• Income support
• Jobseeker’s allowance
• Employment and support allowance
• Housing credit
• Pension credit
• Child tax credit
• Universal credit
• Working tax credit (specifically, the disability element)

It’s possible that you will also be eligible if you receive financial assistance for a mortgage, and you can claim Funeral Payment even if your application for one of the aforementioned benefits has not yet been approved.

What does a Funeral Payment cover?

Funeral Payments do not cover all aspects of the funeral, but they can cover part or all of the cost of some of the most crucial components. These include:

• Death certificates
• Doctor’s certificates
• Plot fees in the case of burial
• Cremation fees in the case of cremation
• Travel to and from the funeral
• The expenses associated with moving a body inside the UK, if the distance is greater than 50 miles

Alongside these costs, there is an additional fund of up to £700 to be used for costs associated with the funeral service itself, including contracting a funeral director, catering, flowers or the coffin. It is important to note that if the deceased has a funeral plan already in place, the maximum you will be entitled to claim for costs not covered by the plan is £120.

How to claim and how to receive the money

You can claim for a Funeral Payment either before or after the funeral has taken place. If you do so before and the application is approved, the money will be paid directly to the funeral director or other authority in charge of the service. If you do so after (within six months of the funeral taking place), the money will be paid directly into your bank or building society account.

To make a claim, visit the government website and either download a form to send by post, or call the relevant number displayed on the website. At the same time, a trained advisor can provide information on any other relevant bereavement benefits you may be entitled to.

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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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