Planning your own funeral
The funeral is our final opportunity to say goodbye to a loved one, an occasion
for family and friends to come together to support one another and an important
element of the grieving process. The funeral is also important as a reflection of
the person who has died, and it may be important that the funeral is meaningful
to them. Bereavement Services is aware that this can only be achieved through the
completion of a pre-need funeral arrangement document describing the funeral arrangements
you will receive.
Funeral wishes, whether in a Will or as described below, are not legally binding,
after death. It is, therefore, sensible to identify who will give instructions for
your funeral, so you feel confident that your wishes will be followed. It is also
helpful, and often therapeutic, if your family and friends can follow your wishes
This document will enable you to price the various options, to see what costs may
arise. The costs will arise in two areas. The first is "disbursements" – the sums
you will pay to doctors (for cremation), the cemetery or crematorium and the minister.
The second is for the “funeral” arrangements by the funeral director. These include
the cost of collecting and handling the body, the coffin, hearse and cars, and all
arrangements. If you are using a funeral director, obtain some quotes as soon as
you have decided what you require. In general, the more you use the funeral director,
the more expensive it will become.
Keep this document with your Will, or somewhere known to the person arranging your
funeral. This point is important! We have already experienced an incorrect burial
which arose because the Will, which contained funeral directions, was not read until
after the funeral. As the family owned a number of graves, they realised they had
chosen the wrong one.
This form is
for guidance purposes only, you can amend this form however you wish, and add pages
if you need to. Delete any sections that do not apply. The form can be photocopied.