Top questions about arranging a funeral during the coronavirus outbreak

With social distancing being enforced across the country, many families are confused about their options when it comes to arranging a funeral. Here, we cover the most common questions customers have been asking over the last few weeks.

Can I arrange a funeral during the coronavirus lockdown?

As things stand, the UK government hasn’t put any laws in place that prevents funerals from going ahead. However, with strict social distancing rules in place across the country, there is a chance that this could change in the coming days and weeks.

If you’re planning a funeral during the coronavirus and want family and friends to attend, it’s important to think about relatives who could be putting themselves at risk. For this, you could ask your funeral director to set up a video stream so that anyone self-isolating can take part in the funeral remotely.

Are there any restrictions in place for attended funerals due to coronavirus?

While there aren’t any government-imposed rules in place for attended funerals, many funeral homes and crematoria have decided to enforce their own restrictions to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

York Crematorium, for example, has limited funerals to just five friends or family members, while others have established strict rules around hugging and shaking hands.

As social distancing becomes the new normal, the situation regarding traditional, attended funerals is changing every day. In many parts of the world, they have already been banned, so it’s important to prepare for the fact that this may happen in the UK too.

How to arrange a funeral during the coronavirus outbreak

If you need to arrange a funeral during the coronavirus outbreak, you should do it from the safety of your own home.

To arrange a traditional ceremony such as a burial or attended cremation, you can search for funeral directors online. You can then give them a call to put plans in place for the ceremony, but expect that they may have certain restrictions in place around social distancing.

If you want to arrange a direct cremation so that you can have your loved one’s memorial at a later date, call our team today on 0808 503 3729.

Can I attend a funeral if I'm self-isolating?

If you’re self-isolating due to coronavirus, it’s recommended that you stay at home and avoid gatherings of people. This means that you shouldn’t attend a funeral if you’re self-isolating.

To get around this, many funeral directors across the country are now offering a live streaming service, allowing vulnerable friends and family members to attend the ceremony from the safety of their own homes.

Alternatively, you could arrange a direct cremation and delay the memorial service until later in the year.

How do I arrange a funeral if I am in self-isolation?

If you’re responsible for arranging a funeral during the coronavirus outbreak but you’re currently self-isolating, it’s really important that you maintain distance from other people in order to keep yourself safe.

Thankfully, you can still arrange a funeral over the phone. If you’re only self-isolating for a short period of time, you could arrange a traditional ceremony for after you’ve finished self-isolating by contacting a local funeral director. However, it’s important to bear in mind that the number of guests may be limited to immediate family, and you’ll also need to follow social distancing rules at the ceremony.

If you’re self-isolating indefinitely or don’t like the idea of social distancing at your loved one’s funeral, your best option is to arrange a cremation without ceremony. This is where your loved one is given a private cremation at a crematorium – their ashes are then returned to you in a temporary urn. Once you’ve received their ashes, you’ll be free to arrange a memorial service after the coronavirus lockdown.

Are there any restrictions on the type of funeral for someone who has died of coronavirus?

In the UK, there are currently no restrictions on the type of funeral you can have for someone who has died of coronavirus. However, some local councils have started to impose a blanket ban on ceremonies, regardless of the cause of death.

The situation is constantly changing, so it’s best to check your local news and funeral directors for the latest information.

Can you delay a funeral until after the coronavirus lockdown?

If you still haven’t put plans in place for the funeral, you could delay things by arranging a direct cremation. This is where your loved one is collected from their place of death and taken to a crematorium to be cremated. Their ashes are then returned to you in a temporary urn.

Once the coronavirus lockdown has come to an end, you would then be able to arrange a personal memorial service with your family and friends – and you could also have your loved one’s ashes present if you wish.

You can find out more about how to delay a funeral here. Or, if you want to know more about arranging a direct cremation, please call us today on 020 3695 2090.

What is an unattended funeral?

An unattended funeral is a simple burial or cremation that doesn’t include a ceremony witnessed by family and friends. Instead, it takes place privately in a cemetery or crematorium. Then, in the case of an unattended cremation – also known as a cremation without ceremony or direct cremation – the ashes are hand-delivered to the family in a temporary urn.

At a time when the government could limit the number of funeral attendees at any moment, an unattended funeral gives families the flexibility to arrange their own memorial service at a later date. With a direct cremation, you can also have the ashes present, whenever and wherever you choose to have the memorial service. You can find out more about arranging a cremation without ceremony here.

Another option that’s likely to become more popular in the coming weeks is video streaming. This is already a service offered by many funeral directors for anyone who can’t make it on the day, but it could soon be used so that all guests can attend virtually during the coronavirus outbreak.

How much does a cremation without ceremony cost?

A cremation without ceremony costs £895 with Farewill. This is the fee for our cremation costs and covers everything from collecting your loved one to returning their ashes to you – anywhere in England and Wales.

Depending on your situation, you may also need to pay £164 for the doctor’s fees and £250 if it’s a complex collection.

Compared to the cost of a traditional cremation, our service is around 70% cheaper. This means that, when the coronavirus lockdown is over, you would have plenty to spend on the perfect memorial service for your loved one.

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