Funeral arrangements and registering the death
When someone passes away, representatives of the Estate can find themselves facing not only costs for a funeral but also a range of other costs on top of funeral expenses.
It’s normal to struggle with preparing for a funeral - it can be confronting. You might already know how your loved one wanted their funeral, or there could be instructions in the Will or other papers. Most people choose to use a funeral director to help make all the necessary arrangements.
While you may not want to think about cost right now, funerals can be expensive, and may need to be paid for immediately. It’s worth checking how much money is available to cover it. Your loved one may have had a prepaid funeral plan, so it's worth checking if one exists, as this will certainly help to manage the cost.
Funeral expenses assistance
Sometimes we can help by releasing funds to pay for the funeral or other valid estate expenses. To do this, all of the Executor/s or Next of Kin (where no Will exists) need to make a request.
We also need an original receipt or invoice for expenses to be claimed from the estate. No other related expenses such as the wake, headstone or memorial can be paid from the deceased person’s account. An original receipt/ invoice is required for expenses to be claimed from the estate. If you would like to claim for funeral costs already paid, we’ll need a proof of death document in addition to the tax invoice to reimburse any payment.
The death certificate can usually be obtained from the Registry of Birth, Deaths and Marriages in your state or territory. If you have a funeral director, they will ask you for the information required and will register the death after the funeral has taken place. If a funeral director is not involved with the funeral arrangements, the person who manages the final arrangements for the deceased is responsible for registering the death. Depending on which state or territory you live in, a doctor or coroner is also responsible for registering deaths
You may be entitled to other allowances for funeral costs. Organisations that may provide bereavement allowances for Australian residents include Centrelink, Department of Veterans Affairs, Insurance Companies, some private health funds and Unions.
Things to consider :
Funds from the estate may be available to cover other costs such as utility bills, medical fees, aged care facility bills, costs associated with lodging an application for Grant of Probate, Letters of Administration or a Probate Bond.
Remember to check if a prepaid funeral plan exists