In Queensland, Pre-Paid Funerals must be registered with the Queensland Office of Fair Trading. Funeral directors are required to present you with a ‘Client Care’ statement outlining the what is being offered, and their roles and responsibilities. It must also outline your rights and responsibilities as their client.
Where to start?
Making and pre-paying funeral arrangements is a straight-forward process. Contacting your preferred funeral director and letting them know that you are thinking of making funeral arrangements is the best place to start. They will give you information on what funeral planning options they offer and help tailor a contract for you. If you do not have a preferred funeral director in Brisbane, you should request a number of quotes to get an idea of funeral costs before committing to anything.
Should I pre-pay with a large funeral home?
There is no difference between the security offered by a large company as opposed to a local independent. All contributory funds are held in trust by a third-party. This means that if your chosen funeral director closes down, your funds are secure and can be used with another funeral director of your choice. There are actually many benefits offered by choosing a local independent funeral director, including lower costs.
What’s contained in my Pre-Paid Funeral contract?
The contract entered into will outline, in full, the services that will be provided by the funeral director, and the fees that will be charged to you for these services. It will also include the particulars and prices of:
- the requested coffin or casket
- the chosen flower arrangements
- tribute flowers
- any transportation and or mourning vehicles
- cremation or burial services in the Brisbane area
- celebrant attendance
- catering and beverages
- funeral notices
- memorial booklets, and
- any additional requests
The contract should also outline how the funeral director will be paid for these services and where the lump-sum funds will be held in trust.
Is there a cooling off period?
According to QLD legislation, Pre-Paid Funeral plans that are established in Queensland are subject to a 30-day cooling-off period. During this time, you may cancel your contract and request a refund of any monies paid. The funeral director may withhold up to $50 to cover the costs of cancellation.