Funeral advice and general information.
The likely cost of a funeral
To get a good idea of the cost of your funeral you should consult your local Funeral Director and tell then exactly what expectations you have. Ideally get an estimate from the firm you are likely to use at the time as it is possible there could be significant differences between one Funeral Director and another, just in the same way as funeral insurance costs may differ from one funeral cover to another.
The local paper or online white pages is the best place to find all the local Funeral Directors.
If you are considering funeral plans this can assist you to determine the level of funeral insurance cover you may require. Remember with funeral plans you can choose any amount of cover, it does not have to just be the likely cost of the funeral. You may want to add a little extra cover to look after other miscellaneous costs such as flying someone in from out of town or clearing some other small debt like a credit card.
Who should be responsible for organising the funeral?
As per case law in New Zealand the Executor of the Will has the main responsibility to delegate or organise the funeral. Interesting, they also have the authority to legally over-ride the wishes of the family.
So you need to be careful at the time of writing your will that you select your Executor carefully. And just as importantly it is very worthwhile taking some time, before the event, to discuss with them exactly what you want to happen in terms of both your will and your funeral.
If you wish to have the person who organises the funeral to be different from the Executor you should add this to your Will and also make sure both the Executor and that other person are fully aware or your wishes.
What is the difference between a Memorial Service and Funeral Service?
When the coffin or casket is not present this is a Memorial Service. This may be when the body is still not available or they may have been cremated at a private ceremony. The Memorial Service often happens some time after the death or possible even in another country.
A Funeral Service has the casket or coffin present and it can be open for viewing or already closed.