During this time of uncertainty, it's natural to wonder how the coronavirus (COVID-19) may change the terms of your funeral plan or the funeral plan you’d like to buy.

Especially as we start to think more about protecting our loved ones if the worse were to happen.

We have put together some helpful FAQs to help reassure you of the current situation.

Due to the ever-changing advice regarding Coronavirus, there is a chance this information may change. The information within this article stands correct as of 17/05/21.

Can I still take out a funeral plan?

Yes, you can still buy a prepaid funeral plan through Reassured today.

We can compare funeral plans on your behalf, answer any questions you may have and help set up your chosen plan.

The prices and features of our funeral plans haven’t changed due to the pandemic.

In the circumstance that your family needs to redeem your funeral plan during this time, then it’s recommended that they follow government advice when attending the funeral.

From July 19th, changes to government guidance for funerals in England include:

  • There’s no longer a legal limit to the number of people who can attend a funeral or wake, however, some venues may impose their own restrictions
  • 2-metre social distancing measures are no longer in place, however, keeping your distance and limiting close contact with others can help reduce the risk of catching or passing on the virus
  • Restrictions on singing, shouting, chanting or raising voices while indoors no longer apply
  • Wearing a face covering in crowded areas is recommended but is now a personal choice
  • Anyone who has symptoms of coronavirus must not attend a funeral and must self-isolate

At the moment most funeral services can go ahead as normal, but if any of the services included in your plan are affected by Covid restrictions, then you should be able to claim a refund through the plan provider.

For more information on Co-op funeral plans redeemed during this time, please visit: https://www.coop.co.uk/funeralcare/coronavirus

Can I buy a funeral plan, even if I have coronavirus symptoms, have tested positive or if I am in one of the ‘high-risk’ groups?

Yes. You don’t need to provide any medical information when securing a funeral plan and acceptance is guaranteed to UK residents.

So even if you’re experiencing symptoms, have tested positive or you’re in one of ‘high-risk’ groups, you can still purchase a plan.

What if I have difficulty paying my funeral plan?

Under normal circumstances, if you were to miss three payments in a row, your funeral plan could be cancelled.

However, under these extenuating circumstances, providers may be a little more flexible than normal.

If you’ve run into financial difficulties and think you may struggle to pay for your plan, then get in touch with your funeral plan provider.

How can I arrange my funeral in advance?

Once you have purchased your ideal funeral plan through Reassured, the provider will post the plan documents to you.

There’s no need to visit a funeral home to arrange your funeral.

Your funeral plan pack will include a special wishes form which you can fill in and send back to the plan provider.

Your special wishes may include things like which hymns or music you would like, poems or readings, dress code and other personal details.

Source: SunLife

Do I have to have a funeral?

No, you don’t have to have a funeral service whilst coronavirus is still prevalent.

It’s possible to have an unattended cremation now and then have a memorial service at a later date when Covid-19 cases have reduced significantly.

Unattended cremation, also known as direct cremation, has become increasingly popular in the last year particularly due to the pandemic.

Have funeral plan prices changed?

No, funeral plan prices have not changed and it’s unlikely they’ll change due to the pandemic.

You can still arrange a funeral plan through Reassured from as little as £19.11 a month*.

Continue reading for the current UK government’s guidance for funerals during Covid-19 and lockdown...

Where can a funeral be held?

Funerals can be held inside a place of worship or crematorium.

You may wish to check the Church of England or Church of Scotland websites to keep up to date with current guidance.

How many people can go to a funeral?

From 19th July in England, there’s no maximum limit to the number of people that can attend a funeral.

However, funeral venues may impose their own limits according to government guidance.

In Wales, there’s a 1,000 person limit and people should keep 2 metres apart.

In Scotland, there’s a 200 person limit and people should keep 1 metre apart.


Who can go to a funeral?

Anyone self-isolating or showing symptoms of Covid-19 should not attend a funeral.

People who are clinically extremely vulnerable can attend a funeral but may wish to take extra precautions to reduce their risk of exposure, such as minimising close contact with others.

What are the rules for funeral wakes during Covid?

In England, there are no legal limits on the number of people who can attend a wake or post-funeral gathering.

Wakes and post-funeral gatherings are permitted in Wales, up to 50 people at an outdoor gathering and up to 30 people indoors.

In Scotland, the number of people who can attend a wake is determined by the Protection Level system.

  • Level 2 areas - up to 50 people
  • Level 1 areas - up to 100 people
  • Level 0 areas - up to 200 people

Anyone who is showing signs of Covid-19 symptoms or is self-isolating, shouldn’t attend a wake.

Are flowers allowed at funerals?

The UK government has not imposed any rules or restrictions for having flowers at a funeral.

Is it possible to view the funeral service online?

Yes. Family members who aren’t able to attend the funeral may be able to view the funeral service online via live streaming, (which is also recorded).

Your funeral provider can advise if there are live streaming or recording facilities available at your chosen funeral venue.

How long can you delay a funeral?

As fewer government restrictions apply for funerals in the UK from 19th
July, it may not be necessary to delay a funeral service.

However, as mentioned, you could opt to have a direct cremation now and delay the memorial service until there’s a better time.

We have written a dedicated article on how long can you delay a funeral in the UK if you require additional information »

Coronavirus help & support:

Sources:

*£19.11 per month pricing includes a £75 discount only available to Co-operative members and is based on a 50-year-old purchasing a Co-op Simple Funeral Plan at £3,020 over the maximum term available of 25 years (total amount repayable £5,733.40) as of 1st March 2021

Related articles:

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