Financial help and assistance intro

Arranging a funeral can be expensive. You can find advice on the financial support available to support you and the eligibility criteria you will need to meet for support.

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Paying for funeral costs

If you are the person responsible for arranging a funeral, you must ensure the bill is paid. Funeral costs may be paid using money from: 

  • The estate of the deceased.
  • A funeral scheme or prepaid funeral plan the deceased may have been paying into.
  • A life insurance policy or pension scheme.
  • The bank or building society of the deceased, if they agree to release funds to pay for the funeral costs.
  • You or the executor - you may be able to recover the money from the estate later.

More information on burial and cremation fees can be found here.    Memorial fees can be found here. 

Financial help

Financial help is available to help cover funeral costs of a family member. If you feel the costs are too high, and you or your partner receive any of the following benefits, you may be eligible:

  • income support
  • income-based jobseekers' allowance
  • income-related employment and support allowance
  • pension credit
  • housing benefit
  • council tax benefit, or if the council taxpayer where you live gets a second adult rebate because you are on a low income
  • working tax credit, including a disability or severe disability element
  • child tax credit at a rate higher than the family element

Funding decisions will take into account: 

  • Your relationship with the person who died.
  • Any other money, other than your personal savings, that may be available to help with the cost of the funeral.

To find out more about funeral payments, Click here to visit the Gov.UK website or go to the Department for Work and Pensions’ funeral payment webpage. 

Financial aid & allowances if your partner dies

Financial aid is dependent on your age and whether your deceased husband, wife or civil partner paid national insurance contributions. You may be able to get one or more of the following bereavement benefits: 

  • bereavement payment, a one-off tax-free payment
  • bereavement allowance, a weekly benefit which can be paid for up to 52 weeks
  • widowed parent's allowance, a weekly benefit if you are a widow, widower or your civil partner has died, and you have a child or a qualifying young person aged between 16 - 20
  • social fund - help may be available from the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) if you don’t have funds 

In Northumberland, we have a dedicated DWP/benefits team available to give guidance and advice to bereaved relatives regarding benefit entitlements. They can arrange to visit you in your own home. 

For further information - funeral costs

The Citizens Advice Bureau  Helps people resolve their legal, money and other problems by providing free, independent and confidential advice. 

National Association of Funeral Directors 

National Society of Allied Independent Funeral Directors 

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