Social Fund Funeral Payments failing the British public



Sun Life Direct’s “Cost of Dying Special Report: Affording a Funeral Social Fund Funeral Payment” has revealed that FP is considered to be over-complicated.

In the survey carried out by Sun Life Direct and academics at the University of Bath, the Social Fund Funeral Payment (FP) was criticised for being under played, with the majority of the public and many funeral directors, unaware of its existence or confusing it with the Bereavement Payment.

The FP, administered by the Department for Work and Pensions, is also accused of causing confusion regarding its criteria for application.  In those cases which are successful, the payments awarded have not risen in line with inflation and so inevitably, those having to meet the costs are left with a shortfall.

One of the most common complaints was that relatives are forced to make funeral arrangements before they’ve received the payment, in some cases immediately pushing them into debt.

Suggestions for improvement include increasing awareness among the public and funeral directors; and speeding up the claims process.

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