What does the funeral account include?
Usually the funeral arrangements are authorised by the next of kin or the executor. Funeral costs can vary considerably depending on choices, selections and requirements. All associated charges are usually incorporated in the funeral account.
The funeral account usually consists of three parts:
Professional service fees
The work of a funeral director involves many hours of careful administration, planning, preparation, co-ordination and implementation to ensure that a funeral service runs smoothly. The fees for the funeral director’s time, use of premises and facilities, mortuary, staff, equipment, the provision of specialised vehicles and numerous other services is called a Professional Service Fee.
The coffin or casket
Morleys Funerals has the largest variety of coffins and caskets in North Queensland. Coffin prices begin at a very reasonable level for simple, unadorned composite board units with a matt or polished veneer finish. Various species of timber coffins, elegantly crafted, are naturally more expensive. Caskets are available in quality timbers and metal and are priced in the upper levels of our range. We will do our very best to provide a coffin or casket to suit the needs and budget of every client.
These extra associated charges are paid initially by us on the client’s behalf and then added to the client’s funeral account. They are generally set fees and costs that are incurred at the time of the funeral. They may include all or any of the following:
- Cemetery or Crematorium fees
- Newspaper Funeral/Death notices
- Floral tributes
- Church/Clergy, Celebrant’s fees
- Musician’s fees
- Copies of Death Certificate
- Medical/Cremation permit fees
- Multi-media productions
- Any other costs for items authorised by family
We usually require a deposit to cover these cash disbursements, but most of our clients choose to take advantage of our early payment discount option and elect to pay the whole cost of the funeral prior to commencement. The financial arrangements associated with the funeral are a matter that we can discuss with you and tailor the service to suit your needs and budget. Our trained staff will talk with you to discuss your requirements and options. Costs are outlined in writing so that you will be aware of the approximate total costs at the time of the arrangement and all requirements are communicated clearly to the person who authorises the funeral, before obtaining their approval.
In situations where the authorising person pays for the funeral expenses, usually the expenses will be reimbursed in full to the payer from funds in the estate, provided there are sufficient funds available. There are times when solicitors, accountants, banks or trust companies acting for the deceased or executor will pay the full costs of the funeral from the estate proceeds or the deceased’s bank accounts.
At Morleys Funerals we appreciate that the funeral account cannot always be settled immediately, so at times, alternative financial arrangements can be organised. We have credit card facilities and in some cases the account may be paid off subject to approval, and we can offer opportunity to apply for finance plans.
Our credit policy is available for perusal and we will help you understand your options so that you can make choices that are suitable to your needs, budget and method of settlement.
We are aware that not all people are prepared for the costs associated with a funeral while others are very well prepared. Whatever your status, it can be comforting to know that there is possibly some financial assistance available through funeral benefits and the like. There are a range of funeral benefits that you may be eligible for through various organisations such as lodges, friendly societies, funeral funds, health care funds, Centrelink and Veterans’ Affairs.
We are willing to help you check your eligibility for any benefits and we may even be able to assist you in making claims. It is possible when the financial situation looks bleak, there may be funds available from Work Cover claims, insurance, superannuation and taxation refund payouts, so it is wise to check these out at the time.
Furthermore, in some tragic circumstances there may be a sizeable government grant available towards funeral expenses. If you have any concerns about your ability to meet the cost of a funeral, please discuss this with us prior to the funeral arrangements and we will advise you about obtaining assistance in this regard.