In some circumstances you may be eligible for the UK Government’s Funeral Expenses Payment. Keep reading to learn more, including how to claim this payment.
What is the Funeral Expenses Payment?
Funeral Expenses Payment is a government scheme for people who are on a low income and are receiving certain benefits to help them pay for a funeral. The payment is made from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).
Generally if the deceased has any funds DWP will not make any form of payment. All avenues for funds must be exhausted before a DWP application will be successful.
The payment won’t cover the whole funeral bill, so you might have to pay up to a third of the cost of a simple funeral.
The payment can help to pay for:
- death certificates or other documents
- cremation fees, including the cost of the doctor’s certificate
- travel to arrange or go to the funeral
- the cost of moving the body within the UK, if it’s being moved more than 50 miles
- burial fees for a particular plot
- you can also get up to £1,000 for any other funeral expenses, such as funeral director’s fees, flowers or the coffin.
Who is eligible for the payment?
To be eligible for the payment, you must be receiving certain benefits or tax credits, you meet the rules on your relationship with the deceased and you’re arranging a funeral in the UK, the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland.
You (or your partner) must get one or more of the following benefits:
- Universal Credit
- Income Support
- income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Pension Credit
- Housing Benefit
- the disability or severe disability element of Working Tax Credit
- Child Tax Credit
You might also be eligible if you’re getting the Support for Mortgage Interest loan.
You can still claim Funeral Expenses Payment if you’ve applied for these benefits and you’re waiting to hear about your claim.
Depending on your relationship with the deceased, you might be able to get a Funeral Expenses Payment if you are:
- the partner of the deceased
- the parent of a baby stillborn after 24 weeks of pregnancy
- the parent or person responsible for a deceased child who was under 16 (or under 20 and in approved education or training)
If a close relative of the deceased (such as a sibling or parent) is in work or not getting a qualifying benefit, you might not get a Funeral Expenses Payment. Any application will take into account the circumstances of the deceased’s entire family, not just the applicant.
If you’re a close friend or relative, you also might be able to get a Funeral Expenses Payment if:
- the deceased did not have a partner when they died
- the partner of the deceased or parent of a deceased child cannot claim (for example, they live abroad or are in prison)
How to claim the Funeral Expenses Payment.
You need to apply for the payment within 6 months of the funeral, even if you’re waiting for a decision on a qualifying benefit.
You can make a claim before the funeral if you’ve got an invoice or signed contract from the funeral director. It cannot be an estimated cost, but rather needs to be a final quote or invoice.
The easiest way to make a claim is by calling the Bereavement Service helpline.
Telephone: 0800 151 2012
Welsh language: 0800 731 0453
Textphone: 0800 731 0464
Welsh language textphone: 0800 731 0456
Relay UK (if you cannot hear or speak on the phone): 18001 then 0800 151 2012
British Sign Language (BSL) video relay service if you’re on a computer.
You can call Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm.
A low cost funeral option may be the best choice for you and your family, as to not leave you out of pocket. Bare helps you say goodbye on your terms. For more information, call 0808 258 3583 or visit our cremation services here.