Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need a funeral director?
There is no law requiring that you use a funeral director but there are aspects that may prove difficult for an individual family, such as keeping the body cool, or completing the necessary paperwork. We are always happy to provide advice and assistance to those considering a DIY funeral.
What should I look for in a Funeral Director?
You should always read their reviews. Anyone who cannot show patience, sensitivity and understanding should be avoided. A reputable funeral director will generally have positive reviews and build an empathetic rapport with you upon first contact.
What is the role of the Funeral Director?
The funeral director’s role is to provide care of the deceased, offer guidance and support to the family, make arrangements for the funeral service, and offer specialist advice. A professional funeral director will aid you at this difficult time by taking on the practical aspects of arranging a funeral.
What is the average cost of a funeral service?
The cost of a funeral will vary depending on the location, type of funeral service, transport, type of coffin, funeral director fees, and any extras like flowers and catering for the wake.
The average cost of a funeral is just over £4,000, however funeral costs vary depending on the type of service you choose. A burial for example is likely to be more expensive than a cremation.
What does the Funeral Director’s Professional Service fee cover?
● Supervising your agreed arrangements before, during and after the service
● Being present on the day to oversee the occasion and direct all attendees
● Discuss your individual requirements and take instructions either at the funeral premises or your home
● Preparing your loved one into care efficiently and punctually
● Mortuary facilities for the deceased to rest in which are modern climate controlled
● Offering chapel of rest facilities so you can visit the deceased prior to the funeral
● Completion of all necessary documentation and payment of external funeral costs required for the funeral to legally proceed
● A casket or coffin
● Providing adequate pallbearers to carry the casket or casket
● Provision of a hearse and any necessary personnel
● To ensure any additional extras such as funeral wreaths, music and funeral service stationery are coordinated correctly
What is the difference between pre-planning a funeral and pre-paying for a funeral?
Pre-planning a funeral is where an individual expresses their wishes for their funeral and gives clear guidance for their family and sometimes instructions to follow for the day in terms of burial/cremation, choice of music, what attendees wear etc. Pre-paying for a funeral is where you set money aside for funeral costs to protect assets from Medicaid. All of this is put in place with a Funeral Director who will understand the exact wishes when the time comes. Along with this, it will also mean that family members won’t have to worry about financing the funeral at a time that is already challenging.
What is a pre-planned funeral?
A pre-planned funeral involves an individual making arrangements for their own funeral. This involves working closely with their Funeral Director before paying for the funeral outright or agreeing to a monthly plan.
What are the benefits of pre-planning a funeral?
● Easing the burden on your family.
● You would like to assume the financial responsibility for your funeral.
● The guarantee that your final wishes will be followed.
● The desire to be self-reliant and have your affairs in order at the end of your life.
What is a pre-paid funeral?
A prepaid funeral plan protects you against the rising costs of funerals. This allows you to pay for your funeral in advance and gives peace of mind knowing your relatives don’t have to cover the costs themselves
What are the benefits of pre-paying for a funeral?
Everything in the prepaid funeral plan will have been taken care including dealing with paperwork, organising the service and transport arrangements and even choosing a funeral director. The most beneficial element is that costs are fixed and protected against any price increase.
What is funeral insurance?
The specifics of what is covered by funeral insurance varies among providers and policies but in general funeral insurance provides your family with a lump sum to cover the costs of your funeral in the event of your death.
About the Funeral
What is a funeral?
A funeral is a ceremony associated with the last disposition of a corpse, beit a cremation or burial, where family, friends and other acquaintances pay their respects to the deceased.
Why is it important to have a funeral?
Funerals enable us to acknowledge that someone we love has died and allow us to say goodbye. Funerals offer continuity and hope for the living but also allow us to reflect on the meaning of life and death. They can also provide an important support system for those who are grieving.
What happens if the death occurs in the middle of the night or on the weekend?
Whether it is the weekend or at night, if someone dies at home, the first thing to do is to call their GP, or the NHS helpline 111. A doctor will then come to your house to assist you. You will then need to contact a funeral director to collect the body.
What happens if the death occurs away from my hometown?
If someone dies away from home, the funeral director will coordinate transportation with a local funeral home in the town where the person died. Should you not be able to contact a funeral home in the area where the person resided, a funeral home in the town where the person died will make the necessary arrangements.
Who should I notify about the death?
● Friends and family
● Funeral director
● Landlord/Mortgage provider
● Financial organisations: banks and building societies, credit cards, insurance, accountants
● Pension providers
● Home care
● Health professionals
● Utilities: TV, water, electricity, gas and broadband
When will the deceased be transferred to the funeral home?
As long as a doctor/medical professional is satisfied there are no suspicious circumstances surrounding the death or the body does not need an autopsy then transportation will be straight away.
How long do I have before registering the death?
● Within 5 days in England, Wales and Northern Ireland
● Within 8 days in Scotland
What is the difference between a funeral and a memorial service?
A memorial service occurs when the body is not present and has these main features: gathering of attendees, the service itself and reception. In contrast, a funeral service contains much of the same structure although the deceased’s body is present at the service and there will the opportunity to say goodbye to the body before burial or cremation
What type of service should I have?
This is an extremely personal choice and if the deceased did not express their wishes, we would advise researching the different funeral types before making a final decision.
Can I personalise a funeral?
Yes. Some people choose to leave photos, write their own eulogy or decorate the coffin appropriately (Flag/ribbons). Personalisation is important and we will accommodate requests where possible.
Do I have to have a religious ceremony?
No. Anyone can conduct a non-religious ceremony, however you may prefer to use a non-religious celebrant. The funeral celebrant will help you choose appropriate music and readings to personalise the funeral service to your taste.
Is there any other mode of transportation apart from the hearse?
There are hearse alternatives available but it is best to ask your funeral director about their suitability for the chosen route. Different cars, horse and cart or other personalised choices can sometimes be accommodated.
How long is a funeral service?
This varies depending on the type of service. A religious service will take longer but most standard funerals are between 45-60 minutes for the service allowing time either side for attendees to enter and vacate the premises.
What is cremation?
Cremation is a method of final disposition of a corpse through burning.
Is a coffin or casket required?
Neither is a legal requirement for cremation. However, you will need to be cremated in some kind of coffin or casket, even if it is a cardboard or wicker alternative.
Can I have a visitation period and a funeral service if cremation is chosen?
Yes. Cremation does not preclude having a visitation period and a funeral service and families appreciate the opportunity say goodbye during a cremation.
Are special cremation urns and momentos available?
Yes there are multiple ways to keep your loved ones ashes and you can commemorate them however you wish.
What is embalming?
Embalming is the process where a body is preserved by using chemicals, to slow down the effects of decomposition.
Embalming contains pigments that enhance the appearance of the deceased by returning colour to their face and hands. Washed out colour and sunken features can be upsetting to people, which is why embalming is always an option but they may not look like they did when alive.