What to do when someone dies

Arranging a funeral in Essex

Guidance on funerals and mourning during coronavirus

Please see our coronavirus hub for guidance on funerals and mourning during the pandemic.


Most people arrange a funeral though a funeral director. It’s also possible to arrange it yourself. It’s important to inform yourself of the options available and some of the questions to think about, such as:

  • what were deceased’s wishes?
  • did they make any plans?
  • did they have insurance or a funeral plan?
  • will money or assets in their estate cover the funeral?
  • if not, what are the other options to pay for it?

If you are on certain benefits, you may be eligible for help. GOV.UK has advice on getting help with funeral costs (Funeral Expenses Payment).

Here are some useful resources that will help you understand the different options and costs involved in planning a funeral:

  • The Money Advice Service has a comprehensive guide on funeral costs, including how to pay for it, what help you might be able to get, and what options you have
  • Citizens Advice has information on arranging a funeral
  • The Good Funeral Guide is the UK’s only not-for-profit independent information resource for funeral advice. It lists the many choices available, and has a directory of service providers
  • Quaker Social Action is a charity that provides a free helpline as well as information and guidance on planning an affordable and meaningful funeral
  • Buy with Confidence lists local funeral services that are approved by Trading Standards
  • Which has a guide on funeral arrangements
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