Funeral Plan FAQs

How does a funeral plan work?

Your funeral plan allows you to arrange your own funeral and spread the cost over time.

You choose your funeral package, which you agree to pay for monthly by direct debit. You agree your monthly payment when you buy your funeral plan.

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Your monthly payments pay for an insurance policy with Royal London, and on your death the proceeds from the policy will be used to cover the cost of your funeral package. Ecclesiastical Planning Services, will carry out your chosen funeral package using their national network of funeral service providers.

What does a funeral plan cover?

There are different types of funeral plans, but typically they cover the funeral costs that you choose for the plan. These can include a coffin, limousine, and burial or cremation fees. You can find out more about the types of funeral plans we offer.

How do our funeral plans work?

With our funeral plans you can arrange your own funeral and spread the cost over time. There’s no need to pay everything upfront. You make an affordable monthly payment by direct debit which pays for an insurance policy with us. And when you pass away, we use the proceeds of the policy to pay for your funeral package. This is carried out by an Ecclesiastical Planning Services director that you choose from their national network of funeral service providers.

Ecclesiastical Planning Services is a funeral plan provider that has worked with a network of funeral directors for over 25 years. It is part of the Ecclesiastical Group which has been protecting people, property and funds since it was founded in 1887.

How does the Traditional Funeral Plan work?

This plan covers the typical expenses that you would associate with a traditional funeral such as; a funeral director, a limousine, a coffin. This helps reduce the financial and emotional pressure on your loved ones. The plan lets you spread the cost with affordable monthly payments.

When taking out this plan, you can choose between a burial or a cremation. You can also choose to upgrade the coffin, add additional limousines or pay extra towards other items, such as flowers, a headstone or a wake. This won’t be carried out as part of your funeral package. But when you pass away, the extra proceeds go to your personal representatives, to pay for the items for your funeral. Record these in the 'When I'm Gone' booklet we’ll send you, so your family know about them.

Who will be my funeral director?

If you choose the Traditional Funeral Plan, we will show you who your funeral director will be before you agree to take out your plan. They will be a local funeral director allocated by Ecclesiastical Planning Services.

Can I record my funeral wishes with you?

After we've set up your funeral plan, we'll send you a leaflet which you can use to record any personal touches you would like at your funeral. You keep this so your family know what to arrange with your funeral director.

What is an additional contribution?

You can choose to make an additional payment into your Traditional Funeral Plan for extra items you’d like for your funeral. We call this payment ‘an additional contribution’. The extras it covers could be a wake, flowers, or a memorial (such as a headstone or plaque).

How does the Alternative Cremation Plan work?

Many people are now considering cost effective ways to put together a less traditional, more personalised send-off. This plan lets you minimise the cost of your cremation expenses with a ‘no frills’ approach that does not include a traditional funeral service.

Your body will be taken to a crematorium at a time and place that best suits the cremation provider. With this basic service, once your body is collected for cremation it’s not possible to arrange a viewing.

The plan doesn’t cover any of the costs of any events. But once your ashes are returned, your loved ones are still free to scatter your ashes, have their own memorial or plan any kind of funeral service or celebration they wish.

While it’s not for everyone, this alternative service allows us to keep the cost down, and many find the ‘no fuss’ approach refreshing. If you want to cover the cost of a traditional funeral with a service and burial or cremation, you may want to consider our Traditional Funeral Plan.

How long do I need to pay into the plan?

You pay to the anniversary date of your plan on or after you turn 90, or until you die, whichever comes first. We refer to this as your Final Payment Date. Your monthly payments are fixed and will never increase. Also, you can’t ‘cash in’ your policy at any time.

What happens if funeral costs rise in future?

Your plan is designed to cover the costs of your chosen funeral package, even if prices go up in future. So, with us, you can be sure there will be no hidden costs further down the line. As long as you’ve made all due payments, your plan is guaranteed to pay out if you die after the first 12 months.

Is my funeral plan guaranteed to cover the cost of my chosen funeral package?

Yes. Even if funeral costs rise in the future, your funeral plan is guaranteed to cover the cost of your chosen funeral package when you die as long as your monthly payments are up to date, and you have had your plan for at least 12 months.

What happens if I stop making my monthly payments?

You pay to the plan anniversary date after you're 90, or until you die, whichever comes first. If you need to stop paying, you will qualify for a contribution towards a funeral when you die, as long as you're at least halfway through paying for your funeral plan. That's halfway from the start of the funeral plan until the plan anniversary date after you turn 90. If you stop paying before the halfway point, your plan will be cancelled and you will get no money back and your funeral package will not be carried out. You can find out more in our terms and conditions.

Does my monthly payment change if I move address?

No. Your monthly payment is calculated when you take out your funeral plan. The monthly payment you make will never increase. If you are moving, please let us know so we can update your records. If you choose the Traditional Funeral Plan and your new home is 25 miles or more away from your current address, we will find a funeral director in your new area.

Can I make any changes to my funeral plan after I've bought it?

No, you can’t add to or upgrade your funeral package once you’ve bought your funeral plan. However, should your loved ones want to add additional services or personal touches when they arrange your funeral, they can do so directly with the funeral provider. They will need to agree any changes and pay any additional costs to the funeral director as these aren’t covered by your funeral plan.

What happens to my Funeral Plan when I die?

Your loved ones should contact the funeral director shown on the Certificate of Entitlement. If you die after the first year and you’ve made all your monthly payments, Ecclesiastical Planning Services will arrange for your funeral package to be carried out with the director. Ecclesiastical Planning Services will claim on your insurance policy, and we’ll cover the cost of your funeral package. In some circumstances, we’ll make payments to your personal representatives instead of Ecclesiastical Planning Services. For example, if you have chosen to make an additional payment towards extras, like flowers or a wake.

How will my loved ones know which services have been paid for?

It’s important you tell your family about your plan and let them know where you keep the paperwork. This will help your loved ones trace the information they will need. And, of course, we’ll be here to answer any questions they may have. Once you’ve arranged your plan, you will receive a Certificate of Entitlement – this will make it clear what is included and explain what your loved ones should do when you die.

What happens if I die within 12 months of taking out a plan?

If you die within the first year, your chosen package won’t be carried out. If you die from natural causes the payments you’ve made will be returned to your personal representatives. If you die from an accident, the value of your funeral plan will be paid to your personal representatives. Your chosen funeral package will be paid for when you die, as long as you have been making monthly payments into your plan for at least one year. If you die within one year of your funeral plan starting, your loved ones should contact us directly on 0345 266 5400.

What happens if I die outside of the UK?

If you die outside of the UK, your funeral plan is still valid as long as your monthly payments are up to date. However, you should be aware that repatriation of your body back to the UK is not included as part of the plan. Your family will need to make those arrangements and pay for your repatriation separately.

Is my funeral plan protected?

With our plans, you spread the cost with affordable monthly payments that pay for a Royal London inusrance policy. When you pass away this policy pays for your chosen funeral package. Not all funeral plans have an insurance policy. Ours do, and insurance policies are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. So your money is safe.

What happens if my funeral director goes out of business?

If this happens we will let you know. Ecclesiastical Planning Services will then find a new director from their local and independent funeral directors. Then we will send you a new Certificate of Entitlement with their details.