Who is responsible for funeral expense payment?
It is the executor’s right and responsibility to organise the funeral and funeral expenses of a deceased person. Accordingly, it is prudent for an executor to ensure that the deceased did not set out any terms in the Will as to their wishes (ie whether they wished to be buried or cremated).
It is also becoming popular for people to pre-pay their funeral or take out funeral insurance. Accordingly, an executor should make enquiries to ascertain if a deceased person has pre-paid their funeral and use the services of that particular funeral director.
If there is funeral insurance, a claim should be made promptly.
Alternatively, if a deceased person has not pre-paid their funeral or has funeral insurance, but has sufficient funds in their bank account, then an executor can attend at the bank with the funeral tax invoice and request the bank to pay the funeral tax invoice from the deceased’s monies held in the bank account.
If there are insufficient funds to pay for the funeral, then the person should speak to the funeral director as to payment requirements.
If a person pays for the funeral then they are entitled to reimbursement from the estate proceeds.
If you would like specific advice on the above, please call our Estates Laws Team on 1300 HATZIS (1300 428 947) or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.