Funeral Plans

Discussion in 'End of life care' started by Spiro, Aug 14, 2016.

  1. Spiro

    Spiro Registered User

    Mar 11, 2012
    522
    Has anyone bought a funeral plan when someone is in the later stages? I've been trying to look at funeral plans, but begin to wonder if it's worth the effort, when there are more important things to think about.
     
  2. sueorbell

    sueorbell Registered User

    Mar 15, 2010
    92
    California, USA
    You are quite right, it's difficult to know what to do.

    Our Mum is in end of life, and years ago prepaid a bronze funeral plan from a large nationwide provider of funerals. However as we look at the plan, there are still things not covered and we are not sure what to do. For instance, should we have one following car for the three closest relatives, her plan just covers the hearse. Who will MC the celebration of life at the crematorium, I have written to a local member of the humanist society to see if they would help as Mum has no religious leader who knows her. These are but examples.

    However one thing that is important is having a funeral director identified so when the moment comes you know where your loved one is to be taken. Our plan at least gave us that.

    If Mum hadn't bought it years ago, I don't think I would be buying one now that she is so close to the end.

    Hope this helps a bit, it's not easy to know what to do. Sue
     
  3. cragmaid

    cragmaid Registered User

    Oct 18, 2010
    7,942
    North East England
    I thought about it when Mum first went into the CH. In fact the SW did mention taking one out as a way of making sure it came out of her capital. Perfectly acceptable use of her savings. In the event I didn't and when the time came last year, her funeral costs still came out of her capital.
    I would suggest nominating a Funeral Director and notifying the home, in case you are unreachable when the time comes that their services are needed.
     
  4. Bill Owen

    Bill Owen Registered User

    Feb 17, 2014
    182
    BRIDGEND
    No need

    hi im bill .my wife pass away in march this year. If you have money in the bank. Let say £20.000 .it cost me for my wife £ 5.000.so you got yhe money .ok if you have not got money you my need it .and yes it is good . But not if you can pay for it you self .its me i feel you dont need all the things that are offer to you.on tv or in the paper or on the net.
     
  5. Spiro

    Spiro Registered User

    Mar 11, 2012
    522
    Thanks for the suggestion, Maureen.
     
  6. Katrine

    Katrine Registered User

    Jan 20, 2011
    2,839
    England
    #6 Katrine, Aug 14, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2016
    I recently bought a funeral plan for my mum. I don't have £4-5K to spend on a funeral and then claim back from the estate. My mum's executor is her former solicitor, not even her current one, so we felt arrangements needed to be in place with a funeral director so that there is a clear plan of action, even if the executor is not immediately available to take charge.

    Also, because my brothers live overseas, her body will need to be in cold storage for probably several weeks before the funeral can take place. This is part of the pre-paid plan. In addition, my mum will be buried with my dad in a cemetery 100 miles from where she lives, so the plan includes staff supplied to go with the hearse and carry out the interment.

    We chose not to include a memorial service with the plan. The family will organise what seems appropriate at the time. A notice will go in the local paper but if the family wants an announcement in a national paper then we can pay for that as extra.

    I have bought the clothes I want her buried in because I don't like the gowns that funeral directors supply.
    I found out recently that my dad was buried in one. I don't think he would have liked that. Why wasn't he buried in a suit? I don't know, as I wasn't allowed to be involved.

    At least this time I've had time to plan what I think my mum would like, including an eco coffin. The thought of her being buried in a giant picnic basket makes us smile. It reminds us of all those carefully organised family picnics where you had to eat all the savoury sandwiches before you were allowed a banana or a Penguin biscuit. Our favourite photograph, which is on the wall in front of me as I write, is of my mum and two of us children having a picnic in a field in Wales. :)

    For me, having had the luxury of planning the arrangements in advance will allow me to focus better on my mum's life, and our memories of family events, rather than on her final years of decline. I suppose what I mean is that I wanted to make choices and ask the relevant questions at a time when it was still 'in the future', not at the highly stressful time of recent bereavement. My need to stay in control I suppose.:rolleyes:
     
  7. Gwendy1

    Gwendy1 Registered User

    Feb 9, 2016
    414
    Glasgow
    Hi spiro, I did buy one for dad and paid for it outright a few years ago. Had to cash it back in to pay giant care home fee bill!! However, it was a simple enough procedure, did it at the same funeral directors we used for my mum. Only took half an hour. So I would recommend doing it, if u get the chance. X


    Sent from my iPhone using Talking Point
     
  8. nita

    nita Registered User

    Dec 30, 2011
    1,817
    Female
    Essex
    I think this has been covered before but I just wanted to ask again to make sure. Could buying a pre-paid funeral plan be seen as deprivation of assets if it brings the person's savings down to where they would need help with local authority paid care? At the moment my mother is CHC funded but I know they can withdraw this funding and then, because she only has low savings, she would be dependent on partial help from the LA.

    I would like to plan this in advance as, like Katrine, I don't want to have to make all the plans at the time of bereavement which I suppose is a bit selfish on my part. Mum is 92 and may not live another year though she has defied predictions before.
     
  9. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    19,277
    Male
    North Manchester
    Most, if not all, LAs do not regard the purchase of a funeral plan as deprivation of assets, I believe this to be discretionary.

    The worst the LA can do is regard the funds spent on the plan as notional capital and reduce the upper and lower limits by the amount spent.

    When buying a plan it is a good idea to talk to your chosen undertaker, not all plans are accepted by all undertakers, and not all undertakers are accepted by all plans.
     
  10. Saffie

    Saffie Registered User

    Mar 26, 2011
    22,499
    Female
    Near Southampton
    True.

    The company whose plan used by Age Uk will only pay out out for the funeral directors owned by their own company.
    I think the company is called Dignity.
     
  11. WestCountryGirl

    WestCountryGirl Registered User

    Jul 27, 2016
    99
    As the others say, look clearly at what the plan covers and whether it covers what is wanted. My Mum signed one up about a year ago and although according to Mum she said where she wished to be buried (next to my Dad at a natural burial ground), this one wasn't covered. Either Mum had it wrong or the Salesgirl lied to make a sale. Had I not noticed then on Mums death we would have had a funeral plan which would cover the costs of her being buried where she didn't want to be or would have had to find the money from elsewhere to make sure that her wishes were fulfilled. Overall, I don't think they are a bad idea given the stresses you are under, but you just have to be careful and read all the small print and don't just believe the person trying to sell it to you.
     
  12. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    19,277
    Male
    North Manchester
    "My Mum signed one up about a year ago and although according to Mum she said where she wished to be buried (next to my Dad at a natural burial ground), this one wasn't covered"

    That's why I say talk it over with your chosen funeral director and get in writing exactly what is covered and what will be an extra charge.

    Note that most banks will release funds from the deceased's account to cover funeral expenses as presented by the funeral director, so if short of cash and the deceased's bank account is healthy organise that flowers, catering costs etc go through the director's account.
     
  13. nita

    nita Registered User

    Dec 30, 2011
    1,817
    Female
    Essex
    Thank you for your comments, all. I have an independent funeral director in mind and I see that his funeral plans are with Golden Charter. I think they have had mixed reviews. I will do as you say, nitram, and make sure everything is itemised. I only want a simple funeral. The only thing that worries me is that Mum hasn't stated a preference for either burial or cremation and didn't ever really want to talk about it.
     
  14. Canadian Joanne

    Canadian Joanne Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 8, 2005
    16,156
    Toronto, Canada
    My sister and I prepaid Mum's funeral some 5 years ago. Mum died 3 weeks ago and the funeral was yesterday. We still had things to decide and do - flowers, food for the reception etc - but the main decisions were done. We found it made things so much easier for us.
     
  15. Izzy

    Izzy Volunteer Moderator

    Aug 31, 2003
    59,946
    Female
    Dundee
    Same here Joanne. All of the big decisions re Bill's funeral had been taken and I only had to think of the things you listed here.
     
  16. nita

    nita Registered User

    Dec 30, 2011
    1,817
    Female
    Essex
    Thank you for posting, Izzy and Joanne, when you've both had such recent losses. Being on here has made me realise the importance of sorting out these arrangements which I never had to think about before.
     

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