And what happens if I can’t afford it?
The loss of a loved one is a challenging time for families, and the added worry of the financial burden of a funeral can be overwhelming.
Funerals can range in prices and while there are a variety of payment options available for most funerals, it’s always better to be equipped with the most up-to-date information at hand so you can make the right choices.
How much does a funeral cost?
Funerals can range in prices depending on the service you choose and what extras you purchase.
Although most funeral homes won’t have set fees, it’s always better to go with a provider who will give a fixed price with an all-inclusive quote, so there are no surprises in costs.
Generally, in Australia, traditional burials can cost anywhere from $4000 to $10,000 while a cremation can cost anywhere between $2000 and $7000.
Newhaven Funerals’ fees can range from $2395 for an unattended cremation, through to $4995 for a virtual service and $5995 and beyond for outdoor services and traditional cremations and burials.
- The newspaper notice estimate $300
- A minister or celebrant estimate $350
- Flowers estimate $25 – $300
- The cemetery plot and headstone estimate $4000 – $10,000
- After hours transfer fees if required $440
- Catering estimate $10 – $30 per person
- A crematorium or venue other than our facilities $POA
What the packages include:
Once you’ve spoken to your funeral care provider about packages, it’s valuable to get a comprehensive breakdown of what your package includes for your service.
Some things you should be looking for in your package could include:
- Transportation Including mortuary vehicles and hearse
- A metal coffin, a solid timber coffin, a timber veneered coffin, a particle board coffin or cardboard coffin
- Cremation fees and permits
- Medical certificates
- Death registration certificate
- Mortuary care, preparation and viewing
- An image slideshow presentation with music
- Personalised memorial book
- Order of service sheets
- Personalised framed photo
- Personalised thank you cards
- On-line and tech package options
What happens if you can’t afford a funeral?
We will help you with upfront fees so you can budget and suggest options on how to save money on various extras.
The basic fees usually cover the essential things like logistics, death certificate, filling notices and permits. Still, additional extras like exotic flowers, metal caskets and special celebrants are things you might have to leave to suit your budget.
From a legal perspective, generally, the person who arranges the funeral and signs the contract with the funeral director will be responsible for the costs of the funeral. The cost may be retrieved from the estate of the deceased if there is no funeral insurance in place. However, if there is not enough money in their estate, that person will have an obligation to pay.
For families who cannot retrieve money from the estate and cannot afford to pay can access financial assistance from the government.
There are circumstances where you may be eligible for government funeral assistance if you can’t afford a funeral.
Although Centrelink does not offer financial assistance with the actual funeral, they do provide a bereavement payment to eligible recipients that can be used by the family to assist with paying for the funeral.
Australian residents are eligible for the following Centrelink bereavement payments:
- Partner Allowance
- Pension Bonus Bereavement Payment
- Carer’s Allowance
- Double Orphan Pension
- Stillborn Baby Payment
Contact the Bereavement Line on 132 850 for more information.
Some state governments help families with the cost of a loved one’s funeral, but you’ll need to require proof that you’re unable to pay for the funeral costs. Even if you are not eligible for the full amount, you may qualify for having part of the expenses recovered.
A bank will release funds from a deceased account if they have adequate funds, but only under a few conditions:
Only the funeral bill can be paid and only after the bank has the original tax invoice from the funeral director.
You can reimburse the funeral costs already paid with an original receipt.
No other related expenses such as the wake, headstone, or memorial can be paid from the deceased account.
The bank may need you to provide a copy of the death certificate, the deceased will or invoice from the funeral director, so it’s advised to contact the bank ahead of time to know exactly what documents you’ll need.
Super funds will let individuals nominate who their super is given to after death, so a family member who is nominated can access these funds. You may also be able to have a portion of your superannuation released on compassionate grounds and then you can be reimbursed once other funds come in.
If someone has taken out life insurance or planned a pre-paid funeral, the costs will be covered. Life Insurance can take a little time for funds to be cleared, but pre-paid funerals will be automatically paid to save the burden on the family.
At Newhaven Funerals, our funeral directors will guide you with the utmost compassion, consideration, respect, and dignity through the most difficult time of losing a loved one.
For a more comprehensive guide of funeral costs for Gold Coast and Brisbane contact us, and we will provide you 100 percent respectful attention 24 hours 7 days a week.
Article by Tim Connolly – Funeral Director Newhaven Funerals Brisbane & Gold Coast
Tim Connolly – Funeral Director Newhaven Funerals Brisbane & Gold Coast.