Government launches Funeral Payments consultation


Losing a loved one is a distressing time and worrying about the costs of a funeral often adds additional stress.

Funeral Payments (also called Funeral Expenses Payments) are available to people who receive certain income-related benefits to help pay for the funeral of an immediate friend or relative.

The Department for Work and Pensions is proposing to make improvements to Funeral Payments to make it clearer who is eligible and easier for people to claim. It has launched an open consultation to seek views on these changes.

What do the proposals include?

The proposals include:

  • Allowing recipients of a Funeral Expenses Payment to receive contributions from relatives, friends or charities without it being deducted from the payment

  • Extending the claim period from three to six months from the date of the funeral

  • Allowing applicants to submit evidence electronically to speed up the processing of claims and get decisions to claimants sooner.

What are Funeral Payments?

Funeral Payments can help pay for:

  • Burial fees and exclusive rights of burial in a particular plot

  • Medical certification fees needed for cremations, 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

  • Death certificates or other documents

  • Up to £700 for funeral expenses, such as funeral director’s fees, flowers or the coffin.

People in receipt of the following benefits may be eligible for a Funeral Payment:

  •  Income Support

  • income-based Jobseekers Allowance

  • income-based Employment Support Allowance

  • Pension Credit

  • Universal Credit

  • Housing Benefit

  • Working Tax Credit which includes a disabled worker or severe disability element

  • Child Tax Credit.

See the Turn2us Funeral Payments information

How do I give my views on the Funeral Payments consultation?

All members of the public can respond. The Government would particularly value views from people who have experienced bereavement and those who have accessed Funeral Payments in the past.

For more information, see Gov.UK - Open consultation - Reforms to the Social Fund’s Funeral Expenses Payments scheme

Email to:

Write to:

Fatima Uzzaman
Department for Work and Pensions
6 – 12 Tothill Street

This consultation closes at 11:45pm on 21 August 2017