Organising a funeral can be an expensive and overwhelming experience for the recently bereaved.
You can help make this difficult time a little easier for your loved ones when the time comes by taking out a Funeral Plan.
Golden Charter is one of the UK’s largest Funeral Plan providers*. Golden Charter is owned by a network of over 700 local independent funeral directors, and represents over 3,000 independent funeral directors throughout the UK. A Golden Charter Funeral Plan helps you and your family by:
A Golden Charter funeral plan can help you save money, by fixing the cost of your funeral director services included in the plan at today’s prices.
The Sunlife Cost of Dying Report 2017 shows that funeral prices are increasing each year, so fixing the final cost now could help save you and your family hundreds of pounds.
Golden Charter allows you to choose from four payment options:
You can pay for your plan in full with a single one off payment.
Your plan will be in place once Golden Charter has sent you your membership pack. This is usually within 30 days of receiving your application.
Instalments Over 12 Months
You can pay by instalments by Direct Debit over 12 months.
If you pay in this way, you need to pay a deposit.
You will be fully covered once your plan is fully paid.
Low Cost Instalments
You can pay in instalments by Direct Debit over an agreed period of between two and 30 years, depending on your age, and there is an instalment charge which is included in your monthly payments.
If you choose this payment type you need to pay a deposit and you must continue making the monthly payments throughout the agreed payment term. Payment breaks are available after you have made 12 payments.
You will be fully covered once you have made your final payment within the agreed timescale.
If you die before all the instalments have been paid, the balance will be requested from your estate so that your funeral may still be carried out. However, if you die within the first 12 months of the plan, Golden Charter can return the money paid by you to your estate but your funeral won’t be carried out as part of your plan. If you stop paying after 30 days but within 12 months, Golden Charter will refund the money you have paid minus a £249 cancellation fee. If you stop paying after 12 monthly payments have been made, the money will be kept by Golden Charter and paid to the funeral director at the time of need minus a £249 cancellation fee, and the remaining balance will be requested from your estate.
Fixed Monthly Payments
You can pay by Fixed Monthly Payments by Direct Debit and your payments will be used to buy a life assurance policy in your name.
If you pay in this way, you need to continue paying until your 90th birthday or until death, whichever is sooner. If you pay in this way, your plan is fully covered once you have made each monthly payment for two years.
If you die within the first two years of the plan, Golden Charter will return 120% of all payments made to your funeral director as a contribution towards funeral costs and your family or estate pays the remainder.
Depending on how long you live, the total cost of the funeral when you die may be less than the total payments made.
All plans have guaranteed acceptance with no health restrictions. Please note, Golden Charter funeral plans are not available to you if you normally reside outside of England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland.
If you pay by Single Payment or by Instalments by Instalments Over 12 Months, there are no age restrictions.
If you pay by Low Cost Instalments you must be under age 78 when Golden Charter accept your plan. Restrictions apply to the period of time you can take your plan over, dependent on your age when the plan is accepted.
If you pay by Fixed Monthly Payments you must be a UK resident and between the ages of 50 and 80 when you take out a plan.
Yes - if you have a preferred funeral director then please let Golden Charter know at the application stage and they can include this in the ‘Additional Information and Special Requests’ section of your application form.
Golden Charter will make every effort to allocate your plan to your selected funeral director, but if they are unable to allocate your plan to your selected funeral director they will contact you to let you know and discuss an alternative. If you don’t have a preference, Golden Charter will simply appoint a funeral director near to you from their network of local independent funeral directors.
The payments you make into your funeral plan are protected. Depending on how you have chosen to pay, your money will either be paid into the Golden Charter Trust or a life assurance policy where it will be held until it is needed to pay for your funeral arrangements.
You can tell us about any special wishes for your funeral when you apply. This may incur additional costs, depending on your requests.
Requests that do not incur any additional costs – such as choice of music – can be made or altered at any time by contacting Golden Charter (with the exception of the Value plan).
Golden Charter will send you a membership pack which will include all of the information regarding your plan and your personal Golden Charter membership card.
If you cancel your plan within 30 days, Golden Charter will refund the payment you have made.
Details of the cancellation terms after 30 days can be found in the ‘Golden Charter Funeral Plans Key Features Document’ in your membership pack.
Golden Charter will inform you if this happens and appoint a new funeral director in accordance with your wishes.
Please let Golden Charter know you are changing your address so they can update their records. You will have the option to move your plan to a different funeral director, if required, however this may involve additional costs from the new funeral director.
Yes - once paid in full, your plan can be transferred and used for the funeral of a spouse or another family member if they die before you. However, please note that this option is not available if you pay by fixed monthly payments. There would be extra costs if the funeral arrangements differ from what is specified in your plan, for example, burial instead of cremation, an additional limousine or a different location.
Yes, simply let Golden Charter know when you apply.
Just one phone call and it’s all taken care of. Once your family have contacted the funeral director quoting your plan number, the funeral director will then take care of all of the arrangements.
*Based on recent market share of funeral plans sold. For details please see Funeral Planning Authority statistics 2017 at funeralplanningauthority.co.uk/statistics and Golden Charter Annual Report 2016/17 at goldencharter.co.uk