• The I did it my way Plan

  • Funeral Plans

    With a funeral plan, you can ensure that the basic costs and arrangements are sorted so that, when the time comes, your loved ones will have one less thing to worry about. You can choose from three plans to suit your needs, as well as your pocket. And it’s simple to sort out, leaving you to get on with enjoying life.

     
  • Find a funeral plan that’s right for you

  • What are funeral plans

    Funeral plans - couple in deckchairs

    Your funeral, your way

    When choosing a funeral, it can be difficult to know where to start – that’s where we come in. There are different funeral plans to choose from - from a simple funeral to something a little more special. And, we have two payment options to choose from depending on your budget.

    Sorting out your funeral in advance is easier than you might think. You can choose your funeral plan in a few simple steps. And then, when the time comes for your funeral to be arranged, all your family will need to do is contact your allocated funeral director, who will put the arrangements for your plan in place. They will also provide your family with help and support at an emotional time.

    The sooner you plan the better

    It’s a fact - funerals aren’t getting any cheaper. The average cost of a funeral has risen 87% from 2004 to 2014 and is now £3,590*. So it’s more important than ever to have something in place to help pay for your funeral.

    Some people think it’s better to just put some money away in savings. But it’s easy to dip into your savings - and once it’s gone, it’s gone. By taking out a funeral plan today, you can protect yourself against rising funeral prices. You’ll also ensure that your family and friends can celebrate your life and not have to worry about making difficult decisions or ending up with a big bill – as most of the cost will be taken care of.

    *Source: Average of quotes for standard cremation and burial arrangements from a sample of funeral directors. YouGov, July 2014.

    Funeral plans - couple smiling

    Why choose SunLife

    We’re here to make choosing a funeral as simple as possible. It’s why we offer a range of plans to meet your needs – giving you the peace of mind you need to get on with life. And when it comes to something as important as choosing your funeral, you should feel sure that you’re dealing with the experts. We’ve been helping people plan for the end of their life for over 35 years and we’re the UK’s best financial services company, as voted by our own customers.

    And to help you get the best possible funeral service, we’ve teamed up with Golden Charter. They represent the UK’s largest network of independent funeral directors – with over 3,300 local funeral directors around the country. When the time comes, your Funeral Director will then take care of everything. They will provide vital support to your family at a difficult time, from organising the funeral, as well as being there on the day to make sure everything goes just the way you want it.

    Funeral Plans - icon large

    Get a quote for a Funeral Plan now

    Or over the phone? Request a callback | We can send you a pack Request a pack

    Compare our plans

    Choose a plan to suit you

    Everybody is different, which is why we offer three different plans, which you can choose to suit you. Can’t decide which plan is right for you? Don’t worry, the table below shows you the different levels of cover our plans offer, as well as an indication of costs so you can compare and choose the right one for your needs. For each of these plans, you can choose either a burial or cremation.

    • The Standard Plan covers the basic costs for a traditional funeral
    • The Select Plan has a few extra touches. It includes a high quality coffin as well as a limousine to give your loved ones that extra comfort at a difficult time
    • The Premier Plan is a more comprehensive plan. It includes a superior coffin, as well as two limousines – helpful if you have a big family.

    There are some costs outside the control of our funeral directors – these include doctors’ and clergy fees as well as the service at a local crematorium or cemetery – so it’s understandable that we can’t cover everything. But to help, we provide an allowance towards these costs that increases every year. It’s our way to ensure we cover as much as we can. There’s more information about this in the table below.

    Our Plans
    •  The Standard Plan The Standard Plan
    •  The Select Plan The Select Plan
    •  The Premier Plan The Premier Plan

    Find the plan that's right for you

    The funeral director’s services
    Available with Product:
    The Standard Plan Yes
    The Select Plan Yes
    The Premier Plan Yes

    This covers all the funeral arrangements for a burial or cremation that the funeral director makes on behalf of your loved ones. Your funeral director will provide guidance on all aspects of the funeral arrangements and help your loved ones to complete the certification and registration of the death and other related documents.

    The coffin
    Available with Product:
    The Standard PlanSimple coffin
    The Select PlanHigh quality coffin
    The Premier PlanSuperior coffin

    Your funeral director will provide your loved ones with a range of quality coffins to choose from, which also includes a personalised name plaque.

    Transport of the deceased
    Available with Product:
    The Standard PlanDuring normal office hours
    The Select Plan Yes
    The Premier Plan Yes

    Your funeral director will arrange the transportation of the deceased to a suitable resting place within 15 miles of your address.

    Care of the deceased and chapel of rest
    Available with Product:
    The Standard Plan Yes
    The Select Plan Yes
    The Premier Plan Yes

    Your funeral director will arrange for the care of the deceased before the burial or cremation. This does not include embalming. This feature also covers the use of a chapel of rest or service rooms.

    Family viewing
    Available with Product:
    The Standard Plan No
    The Select Plan Yes
    The Premier Plan Yes

    If included in your plan, your loved ones will be able to view the deceased in the chapel of rest, rest rooms or service rooms, during normal office hours.

    Hearse and limousines
    Available with Product:
    The Standard PlanHearse only
    The Select PlanHearse plus one limousine
    The Premier PlanHearse plus two limousines

    All plans cover the cost of the hearse and attendants. Each limousine can seat up to 7 people.

    Allowance towards doctors’ fees
    Available with Product:
    The Standard Plan Yes
    The Select Plan Yes
    The Premier Plan Yes

    Our plans include an allowance towards the doctors’ fees needed to complete a medical certificate for a cremation. These costs are out of our control but to help towards covering these fees, we increase this allowance every year. But depending on the cost of these services at the time of your funeral, there may be a shortfall which will need to be met by your next of kin.

    Allowance towards service at crematorium or cemetery, including attendance of clergy or an officiant
    Available with Product:
    The Standard Plan Yes
    The Select Plan Yes
    The Premier Plan Yes

    Our plans include an allowance towards the cost of a service at a local cemetery or crematorium, and also fees for clergy or an officiant to attend the service. These costs are out of our control but to help towards covering these fees, we increase this allowance every year. But depending on the cost of these services at the point of claim, there may be a shortfall which would need to be met by your next of kin.

    Advice about bereavement counselling
    Available with Product:
    The Standard PlanBereavement advice book
    The Select Plan Yes
    The Premier Plan Yes

    If included in your plan, your funeral director will provide your loved ones with confidential advice and resources about bereavement. This would also include a recommendation for a local bereavement counsellor.

    Discretionary costs
    Available with Product:
    The Standard Plan No
    The Select Plan No
    The Premier Plan No

    Our plans cover most features of a traditional funeral, but they do not include flowers, catering, order of service cards, burial plot or headstone, a religious or non-religious service before the burial or cremation, or any specific requirements at the crematorium, such as an organist or choir. If you would like your funeral director to arrange any other services not already included in your plan, these can be arranged for an extra charge.

    Price if you pay in one go
    Available with Product:
    The Standard Plan£3,285
    The Select Plan£3,665
    The Premier Plan£3,999

    If you have the money right now, paying it off in a single payment gives you the reassurance that your funeral plan is paid for so you can get on with your life

    Price if you pay monthly with life insurance, depending on your age
    Available with Product:
    The Standard Plan£22.36 to £64.36 per month*
    The Select Plan£25.30 to £72.84 per month*
    The Premier Plan£27.89 to £80.29 per month*

    If you are looking for lower, fixed monthly payments, you can pay for your funeral by taking out a life insurance policy.

    View the Guaranteed Over 50 Plan icon

    Not quite right for you?

    If a funeral plan is out of your budget, but you’d still like to do something to help with funeral costs, why not look at the Guaranteed Over 50 Plan? It has low premiums, to suit most pockets, starting from just £4 a month.

    Ways to pay for your funeral

    Ways to pay for your funeral

    Funerals aren’t cheap and thinking about paying for your funeral may feel daunting. At SunLife, it’s our goal to make it as easy as possible for you to afford the funeral of your choice. That’s why we offer two different payment options, depending on your budget.

    And the great news is, by taking out a funeral plan you won’t need to worry about how much funeral costs will increase in the future.

    Pay in one go

    Prices from £3,285, depending on the funeral plan you choose.

    If you have the money right now, paying it all off in a single payment gives you the reassurance that your funeral plan is paid for so you can get on with your life. This option is available to UK residents, aged 50 and over. You can pay by debit or credit card – it’s up to you. If you’d like to know more about this payment option, please read the terms and conditions.

    • Once you’ve made the single payment, you’ll have an agreement with Golden Charter to provide the agreed funeral services on your death. The money you paid is held in the Golden Charter Trust, which is managed independently. The trust ensures the money is secure and your funeral will be provided when the time comes.
    • Golden Charter is also regulated by the Funeral Planning Authority (FPA).The FPA exists to protect plan holders' interests.
    • If you change your mind, we’ll refund the payment you’ve made if you cancel within 30 days from your application, or if it’s after 30 days, we’ll refund the payment you’ve made less a £199 cancellation fee. Just be aware that any money refunded may not be enough to cover alternative arrangements – as funeral costs may have risen since you took out the plan.

    Pay every month with life insurance

    Prices from £22.36 a month, depending on your age and the funeral plan you choose.

    If you are looking for lower, fixed monthly payments, you can pay for your funeral by taking out a life insurance policy. This option is available to UK residents aged 50 to 80. Unlike many insurance policies, you won’t need to have a medical or answer any health questions – your acceptance is guaranteed.

    You’ll need to pay a fixed premium by Direct Debit every month until you’re 90, or until death if earlier. Then, as long as you have been paying premiums for at least two years, when you die the policy pays a cash sum directly to Golden Charter. Your Golden Charter funeral director will then arrange your chosen funeral services. If you die within the first two years of taking out the policy, your chosen funeral services would not be provided. All the premiums paid plus an extra 20% would be paid to Golden Charter. Your Golden Charter funeral director will use this money towards your funeral but the balance of your funeral costs would need to be paid by your next of kin. You will need to be sure you can pay your premiums when due as if you stopped you wouldn't get anything back and your funeral services would not be provided.

    When the time comes, your loved ones could decide to receive the cash sum instead of the funeral services. If they choose to do that, they may get back less than you have paid in. The cash sum may also be subject to Inheritance Tax.

    If you’d like to know more about this payment option, please read the terms and conditions.

    • The life insurance policy is provided by AXA Wealth Ltd which trades as SunLife and which is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority
    • If you change your mind, within the first 30 days we’ll refund any payments you’ve made. If it’s after 30 days, or if you stop your payments, your life insurance policy will end, your funeral plan will be cancelled and you won’t receive anything back.

    Payment options compared

    Here's an example of how the payment options work, based on based on a 65 year old who chooses The Standard Plan.

    * Monthly premiums based on age
    Payment optionCostTotal paid
    Pay in one go£3,285£3,285
    Pay monthly with life insurance£33.83 per month*, til age 90 or death, if earlierDepends on how long you live
    Funeral Plan - icon large

    Get a quote for a Funeral Plan now

    Or over the phone? Request a callback | We can send you a pack Request a pack

  • Average funeral costs article icon

    Average funeral costs article

    The average cost of a UK funeral rose 87% from 2004 to 2014 and is now £3,590

  • Funeral planning

    Watch our video about the importance of funeral planning

  • This website contains information on how these funeral plans work. As the website does not contain advice, you need to be satisfied this type of funeral plan meets your needs. If you are unsure and need advice, please visit www.unbiased.co.uk to find an Independent Financial Adviser in your area - you may have to pay for the financial advice provided. Alternatively, if you have any questions about the plan, you can call us on 0800 904 7649.

    Source: In 2014, Critical Research conducted research on behalf of SunLife. They anonymously asked SunLife customers to name the financial services company they considered best in terms of product quality, value and customer care. More respondents named SunLife than any other brand.

  • Frequently asked questions

    • Who is Golden Charter?

      Golden Charter provides the funeral services for our funeral plans. They represent the UK’s largest network of independent funeral directors, with more than 3,300 local independent funeral directors across the country.

    • What if I want extra services that aren’t included?

      Any extras can be discussed and arranged with your allocated funeral director. Please note, if any of your requests incur additional costs which are not included in your plan, either you or your loved ones will need to arrange for these to be paid.

    • Can I choose whether I have a burial or cremation?

      You can choose to have either a burial or cremation – it’s up to you. You just need to be aware that the cost of the burial plot is not covered by the plan. You or your loved ones will need to arrange the cost for your burial plot and headstone separately.

    • How do my family go about making a claim?

      It’s really straightforward. When you take out a plan, you will receive a welcome pack containing contact details for your funeral director. You should let someone know where this is kept. Then when the time comes, your family will need to inform the funeral director of the death and provide a death certificate (which the funeral director can help with). The funeral director will take care of all the other arrangements.

    • How is the funeral director and funeral home selected?

      Golden Charter will allocate a local funeral director from their network of over 3,300 independent businesses. If you wish to change the appointed funeral director for any reason, you can contact Golden Charter who will do their best to find a suitable alternative, although this cannot be guaranteed.

    • What happens if my family pay for my funeral, without knowing about my funeral plan?

      There’s a risk that if you don’t tell your family, they may make their own separate funeral arrangements. What happens then, depends on the way that you pay for your plan:

      • If you paid for your funeral plan in one go your family will need to advise Golden Charter that they had already paid for the funeral. Golden Charter would issue a refund of the money paid less the cancellation fee of £199. The payment is usually made within 5 working days of receipt of the requested documents.
      • If you pay monthly with life insurance, your family will need to advise SunLife that they had already paid for the funeral. The cash sum from the policy will be paid out to the policyholder’s estate, instead of to Golden Charter. A cancellation fee will not need to be paid.

    • What happens if my allocated funeral director goes out of business?

      If a funeral home closes or changes hands, Golden Charter will undertake to find a replacement funeral director to carry out the funeral.

    • How is my money protected?

      • If you pay in one go - When you take out a funeral plan from Golden Charter, you have the reassurance that the money is protected. The money you paid is held in the Golden Charter Trust, which is managed independently. The Trust ensures that the money to meet the cost of your funeral services is secure and that your funeral will be provided when the time comes.
      • If you pay monthly with life insurance - You are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) of which AXA Wealth Ltd is a member. This means that if AXA Wealth Ltd cannot pay the cash sum due when you die, your next of kin could claim 90% of the cash sum from FSCS, to pay towards your funeral. If there is a shortfall, any remaining costs will need to be met by your next of kin. 

    Terms and conditions

    Terms and conditions

    The information you have been provided does not contain advice regarding whether these funeral plans are suitable for you. Therefore it's very important that you read and understand the terms and conditions.

    Please print and/or save these documents and keep them for future reference. If you do not have access to Adobe Reader, you can download the software by clicking the following link:

    Get Adobe Reader logo

    Please note that the Adobe website is not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority or the Prudential Regulation Authority and, as it is not operated by AXA Wealth Services Ltd, we cannot be liable for Adobe contents.

    View the terms and conditions (PDF 0.44MB) if you pay in one go

    View the terms and conditions (PDF 0.50MB) if you pay monthly with life insurance