Funeral Services

Why You Should Understand Your Funeral Plan’s Rules

There must have been a major misunderstanding by either or both parties involved when Josephine Edwardes began her funeral plan with the Co-operative, paying in £800 way back in 1988. This story was recently highlighted in the Sunday Times. She thought that all of her funeral costs would be covered after her death. The Co-op recently told her family that the plan would pay out the £800 which is the amount she paid originally. Adjusted for inflation, the £800 paid to the Co-operative in 1988 would be worth around £2000 today. There would still be insufficient funds to cover the cost of a funeral, with a cremation costing somewhere between £3,500 and £4,000 in 2014. Her family thought that the purchase of the policy would mean that no one would be burdened with large bills after she died. If, as it would appear, the lady purchased an investment policy, it has failed miserably over the years or she had placed money in a Bond that was not designed to increase in value, just to keep the money so it could be put towards a funeral when it was required. This situation highlights the need for individuals to understand what a funeral plan actually does and what it will achieve. While it is good that she has put aside £800 towards a funeral, this still leaves her family between £2000 and £3000 short for the final invoice. We, at FuneralPlanAadvice.com, suggest that potential purchasers look for the information which specifies what will happen to your money. A funeral plan should be designed to guarantee the funeral director’s fees as well as making a contribution that you would expect to cover most if not all of the disbursements associated with a cremation. A burial will always cost more because you have to purchase the plot of land for the grave, but if you know what a plot of land will cost, you can purchase this in advance or add the money to your funeral plan so the right sum is available at the right time. We do not know the specific details of this purchase in 1988, so we cannot say which party is right and which is not. This is not to say the Co-operative did anything wrong; it may be that the plan details expected by the family now in 2014, 26 years later, were not the same as the plan that was...

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Funeral Plans in Numbers

The Funeral Planning Authority (FPA) statistics show that 135,160 pre-paid funeral plans were purchased during 2013, from registered providers. 57,001 plans were drawn down, which means they were used for a funeral during the year. This still leaves 859,840 pre-paid funeral plans that were undrawn; not used yet, at the end of the year. This represents around 1.5% of the U.K.’s population. Those purchasing and using pre-paid funeral plans are expecting to set aside the majority or all of their funeral costs by paying in advance. An average funeral across 2013 cost £3300-£3500 and the FPA suggest that funeral inflation is around 7% per year. That inflation rate is over three times the standard British inflation rate at present. funerals will cost around £6,220 by the year 2022. Compare eggs to eggs Anyone considering the purchase of a pre-paid funeral plan should carefully look over a range of potential packages, to not only compare prices, which are all quite similar, but to compare the contents of each package so that you know what is guaranteed within the purchase and what is not. Some prepaid funeral plans guarantee the funeral director’s costs and apply a sum of money against the additional costs, which include the cremation or burial, doctors fees and the expenses involved in conducting a funeral service. A burial costs around £1,000 more than a cremation. You will need to check whether limousines are included as well as a hearse for the occasion. You will receive a certificate detailing the precise information about your purchase. The type of funeral you require can vary considerably. In some circumstances people wish for the body to be available for visitors to spend a few moments to say a private goodbye. Choosing a simple coffin or up to the most extravagant model, can dramatically change the cost of a funeral. Best advice The best advice for anyone considering the purchase of a funeral plan is to decide exactly what you do want, to list what you don’t require and see which packages meet your particular needs. You can complete the purchase over the Internet, by post or by meeting with a representative of the funeral plan provider. All providers offer you at least a 28 day opportunity to change your mind and ask for all of your money to be returned to you. Related articles Funeral director speaks out on rising cost...

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What If You Can’t Afford a Funeral?

An article, from the Mail on Sunday’s ‘This is Money’ section, questions how you can afford to cremate a loved one if you don’t have the money available. They offer advice about the current costs of burying or cremating someone, how the funds can be relocated from the deceased’s estate and what happens if you have no money at all. A link to the article can be found on this webpage. They’re part of the Daily Mail newspapers in the UK. Although the cost of funerals is rapidly increasing by what appears to be more than the rate of inflation each year, particularly as councils have found that this is a way to increase their revenue without increasing local council tax, where you don’t plan for the inevitable cost, the expense can be quite a shock to the system of those you leave behind. For those who cannot easily find £2,000-£6,000 from their own funds, or the estate of the deceased, you could consider a Pre-Paid Funeral Plan and pay just under £14 a week (around £60 a month ) over five years, to set the funeral director’s costs so that you never have to pay any more whatever the rate of inflation. A high-quality Pre-Paid Funeral Plan will cover all of the variable costs which are associated to a cremation, such as the doctor’s fee, the clergy or humanist fee and the local authority’s charge for the cremation. With an annual funeral costing around £3,500 and present, the total charge may be far higher when you add the cost of flowers, newspaper advertisements, a printed order of service and the catering for a wake afterwards. The Halifax issued figures recently that claims that the average person in the UK has £7,780 in savings. Banks and funeral directors will do all that they can to ensure that funds are available at the right time and to reduce the burden of finance at a time when your life may be in turmoil already. Nevertheless, funeral directors are running a business and expect to be paid and banks can only release money if they are sure there is sufficient within the deceased’s estate to be able to clear debts. A last Testament and will is a good legal document that will help an executor of a will to collect funds from bank accounts and pay debts, but perhaps a Pre-Paid Funeral Plan...

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Pre-Paid Funeral Plan Sales Are Up

The Funeral Planning Authority has issued statistics about sales of Pre-Paid Funeral Plans for 2013/14. They say, that from 95% of the market’s results (they don’t know about the other 5%) 135,160 plans were purchased during 2013. 57,001 plans were used during the year (a funeral was arranged) . This still leaves 859,840 plans unused so far, with people who have planned to offer peace of mind to their families by arranging their funeral in advance. Private Healthcare UK added this notice to their website: According to the latest Funeral Planning Authority figures, 67,484 people bought pre-paid funeral plans in the first half of 2013. Expected growth for 2013 is 12% with expected total sales of 135,000. During the first half of 2013, 30,555 people died and had all or much of their funeral paid for by their funeral plan. By the end of 2014 there will be around a million people with a funeral plan. A pre-paid funeral plan is a contract where in return for a fee in advance, the plan provider agrees to provide a funeral for the customer on the death of the customer. Where you need to find out more about Pre-Paid Funeral Plans and their availability for you, go to these help pages for more information. Related articles Poorest people cannot afford costs of dying, report...

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How to Prevent Your Funeral from Becoming a Commercial Event

When your coffee morning discussions are all about the environment and wondering about eco-coffins, green funerals and burials in dedicated woodlands, you may need to consider spending some time over at the Natural Death website. You will be able to find out about the majority of subjects that are close to your heart where you prefer to avoid the commercialisation and high expense of the standard funeral. You will find out how you can choose a natural burial ground and there are a high number of articles offering guidance and support for people planning a funeral, which may be your own or for someone close to you. Hopefully, the myths will be dispelled and you will receive specific information that is accurate because it comes from experts who have been helping to arrange funerals for a number of years. Knowing where the best woodland burial sites are is just one part of your potential evaluation, because you need to know what questions you should ask about the burial site, to ensure that your needs are met. There are a wide range of eco-coffins available in the UK, and this website will direct you to a range of possibilities made from willow or cardboard and also solid wood, from correctly maintained forests. Part of your best planning will come from pre-paying for your funeral in advance so that you have a Pre-Paid Funeral Plan in place for when the time comes, to give you and your family peace of mind that everything is organised and paid for. Related articles Grieving families face £1,000 ‘death tax’ as councils cash in on...

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