Funeral plans

Discussion in 'End of life care' started by kingybell, Apr 26, 2015.

  1. kingybell

    kingybell Registered User

    Feb 3, 2015
    Not sure if this is the right place to post this. My mil in still in early to mid stages but being a planner and knowing the inevitable is going to happen I want to save for her funeral.

    She has no money (other than benefits) and her view is 'the state will pay'. However on further probing she would like a burial and big Catholic mass (the works). I am wondering does anyone have any experience I funeral plans? Are they a good idea?

    I don't want to be landed with a massive bill when she does pass away. As she has no insight into her dementia and she's under 60 she thinks what we are talking about is going to happen in 20-30 yrs time.
    I can save a bit from her benefit every month to pay into this but just need to know if it's worth it.
  2. tinap

    tinap Registered User

    Nov 2, 2014
    west midlands
    I would certainly look into this my mom was on benefits and had no capital and certainly wished I had looked at things before. If your not in receipt of benefits yourself there is no help. my mom has recently passed and the cost of a basic burial is ridiculous. I think we all want to think we will have years ahead but I know I will look into this for myself and my husband has I wouldn't want my daughters to have this added problem if anything happened to us. Its not about being morbid just realistic.
  3. marionq

    marionq Registered User

    Apr 24, 2013
    Some time ago there was a thread on this and as a result I took out a plan for my 80 year old SIL who has limited funds of her own. I handle her affairs and direct debited payments to the Age UK plan so that no one else would be landed with the bill.

    The middle choice of their plan includes taking the body to the church for requiem mass as in a Catholic service. The whole thing will be paid off this year and she has never missed the payments.
  4. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    North Manchester
    If you have a preferred undertaker check with them what funeral plans they accept, some undertakers do not accept all plans.
  5. Saffie

    Saffie Registered User

    Mar 26, 2011
    Near Southampton
    #5 Saffie, Apr 26, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2015
    Good advice. Be careful. It works the other way round to, i.e. some plans will not accept all funeral directors.
    A number of these plans are owned by corporate companies who also own Funeral Businesses, incuding the one used by Age UK.
    I took out a plan, paying in full upfront, for my husband with Age UK.
    On the form I named the Funeral Director I wanted - a well thought of local family business - and when it was returned I read the accompanying letter that all was accepted and organised, so I put it away with other official documents.

    When my husband died, I went to the Funeral Directors and handed over the Plan but the name of the designated Funeral director on the plan was not the one I had requested. The Funeral Director would have accepted the plan, though they have their own - and he rang Age UK but they would only pay £1,000 less than I had paid them as this was not one of the businesses owned by the company which authorises Age UK's plan.

    So I rang Age UK and cancelled this Plan, paying £90 for the privilege, and paid the Funeral director myself.

    Nowhere was I given a list of the Funeral directors Age UK would use and at no time, even though I spoke on the phone twice after my application was received by Age UK, was any mention made of a change in the funeral director.

    To have to face this the day after my husband died was so distressing. The Funeral director was kindness itself but his disgust for Age UK matched my own.
  6. WIFE

    WIFE Registered User

    May 23, 2014
    You could of course just open a separate savings account for your Mother and put a sum of money away each month against future Funeral costs. You might even make an itsy-bitsy little bit of interest on her behalf!
  7. Saffie

    Saffie Registered User

    Mar 26, 2011
    Near Southampton
    The thing is that if your mother's has some savings over the lower £14, 250 threshold, most LAs will accept a funeral plan as a legitimate expence.
  8. kingybell

    kingybell Registered User

    Feb 3, 2015
    Thank you all for your responses. I will take a look at a local funeral directors we need to explore a bit more with her what she wants.

    She has £0 no savings in fact I think I mentioned in another post she's in extreme debt.
    I want to ensure its another thing we don't need to think about.
  9. Girlonthehill

    Girlonthehill Registered User

    Jan 1, 2015
    #9 Girlonthehill, May 3, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2015
    As regards funeral plans I have heard some really awful experiences. The good funeral guide have been so incensed by the whole thing that they have started their own - have areas at this for more info:
  10. Kevinl

    Kevinl Registered User

    Aug 24, 2013
    Please read the small print before you sign up. All these plans are sold to make a profit and there are a lot of exclusions.
    To be fair to the catholic church (not that I have a lot of time for them) as my mum was a regular member of the congregation and did voluntary work there too the church part of the cost was very minimal, most of the money goes undertaker's charges and council burial costs and a doctor's fee if you want a cremation.
    To be fair to undertakers too; 8 blokes for half a day, hearse, couple of shiny black cars, collecting from the hospital and viewing. It all adds up, plus they put in all the logistics, can't be easy.
    Back to the point, if you're a "planner" then you have to work out which is the most likely: will you pay in more than you get back if she lives for ever or will you get out more than you put in if she pops off earlier than expected.
  11. Saffie

    Saffie Registered User

    Mar 26, 2011
    Near Southampton
    #11 Saffie, May 4, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2015
    This sounds similar to the Plan run by the National Association of Funeral Directors
    of which my local Funeral director is a member. The money is invested in a life assurance policy and ring-fenced to pay for the funeral.

    CLAIREDAY Account on hold

    Apr 22, 2015
    Only cover what you will definitely use on the funeral plan.

    My father had a funeral plan and it included the crematorium, ministers fees, hearse, funeral directors fees and 1 limo.
    I am now organising Dad's funeral and things seem to be going ok.
    He could have booked 3 limos for younger relatives who were alive at the time it was taken out ( sisters cousins etc ) but Dad outlived all of them.


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