The Funeral Support Payment is a one off payment from Social Security Scotland to help people on low income benefits with a contribution towards the cost of a funeral.
This replaces the Department for Work and Pension’s Funeral Expenses Payment in Scotland. If you have already claimed the DWP benefit, you cannot make an additional claim for this new benefit.
To be able to make a claim, the claimant or their partner must be in receipt of one of the following benefits:
- Universal Credit (UC)
- Income Support
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income related Employment and Support Allowance
- Pension Credit
- Housing Benefit
- Child Tax Credit (CTC)
- Disability or severe disability element of Working Tax Credit
Applications for the Funeral Support Payment are accepted from the date of death, up until six months after the funeral has taken place. This means that anyone who meets the eligibility for the Funeral Support Payment and has already paid for a funeral within the last 6 months will be able to apply retrospectively, as long as they haven’t already received a Funeral Expenses Payment from DWP. So if you only qualify for one of these gateway benefits during summer break out with term time, you may still apply in retrospect providing it is within the 6 month window.
As well as being on one of the qualifying benefits, the applicant (or their partner) MUST also meet the following criteria:
- The applicant must have the nearest relationship to the person who has died. (This is determined by the family hierarchy lists from the Burial and Cremation (Scotland) Act 2016.)
- The applicant must be responsible for the payment of the funeral
- The applicant must live in Scotland
- The person who has died must have lived in the UK at the time of death
- The funeral must take place in the UK, or in some cases in a member state of the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland
An eligibility checker is included at the beginning of the online form and on page two of the paper application form so you can ensure you do meet the criteria before applying.
What you will get:
Funeral Support Payment is a part-payment and will cover some, but likely not all, of the funeral costs. This is dependent on individual preference of funeral choices and varying fees for services across Scotland. If eligible, the amount the applicant will receive will depend on what they have claimed and what funds were left by the person who died.
Funeral Support Payment can cover:
- Burial and cremation costs (these costs do vary throughout the country so the government has published reasonable local costs they will pay - )
- Flat rate for any other expenses - £700 for the majority of applications and £120 if the person who died had made provision for their funeral through a funeral plan
- Some travel costs, document costs and medical costs
Other key points to note:
Only 1 person per funeral can make a claim.
The death must be registered before making the claim and if you have a funeral director in place, giving consent for them to speak to Social Security Scotland will make the process easier and more efficient
Payments can be made directly to the claimant or to the chosen funeral director.
The payment is a contribution towards the cost of the funeral the applicant is arranging/has arranged and the decision on what they use this money for is up to them. In most cases, it will cover the burial or cremation costs and help towards other funeral costs such as funeral director’s fees, a coffin or flowers
The funds are non-repayable and are not a loan, however, if the person who died left financial assets this will be recovered from their estate
Decisions are reached quickly and applicants should have their decision within 10 working days of the application and relevant supporting documents being received by Social Security Scotland
To make an application:
Call freephone on 0800 182 2222 to complete the application over the phone or to request a paper application form. Or go to mygov.scot/funeral-support-payment