Paying for a funeral

You should be aware that when you arrange a funeral, you will be responsible for paying the funeral director’s bill. The cost of the funeral will normally be recoverable from the deceased person’s estate.

Timing of payment

As most funeral directors will require payment before the grant of probate (if there is a will) or the grant of letters of administration (if there is no will) is forthcoming (this can take several months) you will need to work out a way to pay the bill for the funeral.

Payment from a joint bank account

If the deceased person had a joint bank account with another person then the account will not be frozen and the funeral can be paid from this.

Some banks and building societies may agree to release funds from an account in the deceased person’s name to pay for funeral costs although they are not obliged to do so.

Payment using a pre-paid funeral plan

Alternatively the deceased person may have had a pre-paid funeral plan or there may be a payout forthcoming from a life insurance policy or pension scheme.

Payment by the personal representatives

As a final option you as the next of kin or the executors may need to pay and then recover the money from the estate later.

If having difficulties paying

If you have difficulty paying for a funeral that you have to arrange, you may be able to get a social fund funeral payment from the benefits agency if you are, or the deceased person was,  in receipt of government support including: Income Support, Housing Benefit, Council Tax Benefit and Disabled Person’s Tax Credit.

A funeral payment from the government will have to be paid back from the deceased person’s estate.

Please note

The information which we provide through Lasting Post is in outline for information or educational purposes only. The information is not a substitute for the professional judgment of a solicitor, accountant or other professional adviser. We cannot guarantee that information provided by Lasting Post will meet your individual needs, as this will very much depend on your individual circumstances. You should therefore use the information only as a starting point for your enquiries.