Funeral Plans: Making your wishes known!

During a Will appointment, one of the questions that I ask people is whether they would prefer to be buried or cremated. For some people, this is the first time that they have ever spoken about what they might want and for others, the question sparks a lively discussion about music, clothing and flowers.

But unless you have actually made your funeral wishes known it will be left to surviving relatives to guess what you might want and find the money to pay the bill.  Is this the kind of legacy that you would really want to leave behind?

Whilst this may not be the easiest conversation to have, the need to discuss and make plans for how funerals will be paid for is an important discussion for all families to have.

Funeral Plans blog Just Wills Nottingham

  • 50% of families have to borrow money to pay for a loved one’s funeral.
  • The average cost of a funeral has almost doubled in the last ten years from £2000 to just under £4000.
  • This figure is set to continue to rise and may increase financial strain on families.

Paying for a funeral is a standard ‘testamentary expense’. This means it can be paid out of savings or bank accounts you have directly to the funeral director. If you do not think there would be sufficient funds or you prefer there to be specific money designated for your funeral, you could purchase a pre-paid funeral plan or life insurance policy (in trust) from a regulated provider.

Putting financial cost aside, arranging a funeral without knowing the deceased’s wishes can be very stressful at a time of grief and cause conflict among families.

Leaving a simple note or talking to your loved ones about what you want and don’t want can be very helpful.  You can include:

  • Burial or cremation preference
  • Type of service (e.g. one where people attend or no service)
  • Where you wish to be buried or your ashes scattered
  • Music you would like to be played
  • Poems or prayers you would like to be read out
  • What clothing would you like people to wear (e.g. no black)
  • What charities would you like people to donate to if they wish

Letting your loved ones know your wishes and having a plan to pay for your funeral will be of comfort to your loved ones. You can store a copy of your funeral wishes with your will and keep this up-to-date if your wishes change.

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