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Funeral Plan Terms & Conditions

INSTRUCTIONS FOR YOUR NEXT OF KIN OR EXECUTORS WHEN DEATH OCCURS

 

1. When death occurs, next of kin or executors must contact Assist Funeral on our dedicated 24hr response line (0800 246 1004). Most funeral directors operate 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year. Your next of kin or executor will be put in touch with a professional, who will know what procedures to follow at this time. They will then arrange and advise on any immediate steps that need to be taken.

2. The information that you and Assist Funeral require is contained in this document. Should there be any further details required we will advise at the time of purchase.

3. When attending the Registrars of Births, Deaths & Marriages, please remember to take with you details of the Assist Funeral Plans and, if possible, a birth and/or marriage certificate.

4. Extra copies of the death certificate should be obtained for Probate, Social Security, banks and insurance, at the time of this registration.

5. Assist Funeral will require a copy of the death certificate to allow access to the trust, in order to pay for the funeral service.

 

1. DEFINITIONS

1.1 In these conditions the words listed below shall have the following meanings unless the context otherwise requires:

“Company” means Assist Funeral.

“Cancellation Charge” means the cancellation charge which may be made by the Company in accordance with the provisions of these conditions (which in the case of Assist Funeral Plans is always £395).

“Funeral Director” means the Funeral Director named in the Plan.

“Plan” means the Funeral Plan identified in this agreement which includes the services specified by the Company from time to time to be included within that Plan.

“Plan Holder” or “You” means you, the customer or, where you are purchasing the Funeral Plan for the benefit of some other person, that person named within that specific plan. References in these terms to your ‘Personal Representatives’ shall only be applicable where you are the Plan Holder or if you pre-decease the Plan Holder.

‘3rd Party Agent’ means an individual and/or company (other than Assist Funeral Plans) through whom the funeral plan was purchased.

 

2. CONTRACT

2.1 Except where the plan is purchased direct from Assist Funeral Plans (either via telephone or online), no contract shall exist between the Plan Holder and theCompany until the plan application form has been signed and dated by the Plan Holder and on behalf of the 3rd Party Agent to indicate acceptance of the proposal. When this has been done, this will be the date of the Plan.

2.2 Upon acceptance the Company will issue the Plan Holder with the formal Plandocumentation identifying the Plan chosen and providing an emergency telephone number and instructions to use in the event of the death of the Plan Holder.

 

3. OBLIGATIONS OF THE COMPANY

3.1 Upon receipt of payment for the Plan to the value shown in the signed Plan application form, the Company will provide or procure the services stipulated in the Plan upon the following conditions and subject also to the exclusions and limitations in clause 4 of these Conditions:

3.1.1 If you have a complaint about the Company, then you are asked in the first instance to contact the Company which will endeavour to resolve the issue in accordance with the formal complaints procedure.

3.1.2 Any complaints about the Funeral Director should be referred back to their own disciplinary department for determination (if applicable) with its own complaints procedure. Should you fail to receive a satisfactory response please contact the National Federation of Funeral Directors who will act in mediation.

3.1.3 If any of the services stipulated and paid for in the Plan are unavailable at the time of the funeral, the Company will procure substitute services which are as near as practicably equivalent to the services stated in the original Plan. Furthermore, if the Plan Holder specifies that they wish to nominate a specific Funeral Director to conduct their funeral, but at the point of need it transpires that, for any reason, that Funeral Director is unable or unwilling to carry out the funeral, then the Company will endeavour to appoint a Funeral Director who is willing and able to carry out the Plan Holder‘s wishes without further cost to the Plan Holder’s family and/or estate. If no Funeral Director is willing or able to able to conduct the service for the sum offered to them by the Company, then an additional contribution may be required from the Plan Holder / Plan Holder’s estate or whoever arranges the funeral.

4. EXCLUSIONS AND LIMITATIONS

4.1 The cost of the funeral in the Plan includes certain disbursements(‘Disbursements’) as well as the Funeral Director’s own charges. Disbursements comprise all out of pocket expenses and sums payable to third parties in connection with the funeral other than any sums due to the Funeral Director for providing their own services. Such disbursements can include (by way of example only) sums payable for purchasing a burial plot, crematorium fees, doctor’s fees, minister’s fees, church fees, flowers and obituaries. All Assist Funeral Plans (except Topaz) include an allowance of £1100 to cover disbursements. If the cost of the disbursements increases between the date of the purchase of the Plan and the date of the funeral by more than the increase over such period in the Retail Prices Index (RPI) then you or your Personal Representatives (or other person who arranges the funeral) will be liable to pay the difference to the Funeral Director in accordance with their payment terms.

4.2 BURIALS: For Plans which provide for a burial, the Company will charge costs to third parties for the provision of a burial plot (assuming the Plan Holder wishes to purchase a burial plot at the same time as they purchase their Plan). If the Plan Holder chooses not to purchase a burial plot at the same time as they take out their plan, it will be necessary for the Plan Holder or Representatives of the Plan Holder to purchase the grave plot at a later date. If pre-purchase of grave space is not possible (or if, the Company having pre-purchased a burial plot, the plot later ceases to be available for any reason outside the Company’s control) and the costs of a burial plot increase between the date of the purchase of the Plan and the date of the funeral by more than the increase over such period in the Retail Prices Index (RPI) then the Plan Holder or Representatives (or other person who arranges the funeral) will be liable to pay the difference to the Funeral Director in accordance with their payment terms.

If any of the burial costs increase as a result of the Plan Holder moving address (for example the interment costs of the cemetery) between the date of the purchase of the Plan and the funeral then if such increase is more than the increase in the RPI over the same period then the Plan Holder or Representatives (or other person who arranges the Funeral) will be liable to pay the difference to the Funeral Director.

4.3 CREMATION: For Plans which provide for cremation, should any of the specific instances referred to in clauses 4.3.1 to 4.3.3 below apply, then additional charges will be due from the Plan Holder or Representatives (or other person who arranges the funeral) to the Funeral Director in accordance with their payment terms. These are as follows:

4.3.1 If the crematorium at which the funeral occurs makes any additional charge for the provision of music (including, for example, an organist or choir) or any other services.

4.3.2 Any fee payable to a doctor to the extent that it exceeds the maximum amount recommended from time to time by the British Medical Association or any successor body thereto.

4.3.3 The fee charged by the Minister of Religion or Officiant to the extent that it exceeds the maximum amount recommended by the Church of England Stipend Authority or any other authority of the Church of England in succession thereto.

4.4 The funeral service will be arranged at a time convenient to the Personal Representatives of the Plan Holder, subject to the availability of the Funeral Director. An additional charge will be due to the Funeral Director in accordance with their payment terms should the Plan Holder’s Personal Representative (or other person who arranges the funeral) require the funeral to take place at a weekend or public holiday.

 

5. CHANGE OF ADDRESS

If the Plan Holder changes their permanent address they must notify the Company whereupon the Company will have the right to nominate an appropriate alternative Funeral Director. If, notwithstanding the change of address, the Plan Holder or Personal Representatives wishes the funeral to be undertaken by the originally specified Funeral Director then the Plan Holder or Personal Representatives (or other person who arranges the funeral) will be responsible for any additional transport costs (beyond a 20 mile radius) incurred in connection with the funeral.

6. VAT

6.1 Apart from the specific instances referred to in clause 6.2 below, the Plan does not include VAT which is not at present charged on funerals in the United Kingdom. However, if at the time of the Plan Holder’s funeral VAT is payable on the funeral service or any part of it then any increased costs will be payable by the Plan Holder or Representatives (or other person arranging the funeral) to the Funeral Director.

6.2 Some Plans do include a charge for VAT on certain items (for example, the provision of a headstone or memorials). If at the date of the funeral the rate of VAT has increased then the Plan Holder or Personal Representatives (or other person arranging the funeral) will be liable for the increase which will be payable to the Funeral Director in accordance with their payment terms.

 

7. PROCEDURE ON DEATH OF PLAN HOLDER

7.1 Subject to Clause 3 and Clause 7.2 below, as soon as the Company has been informed of the death of the Plan Holder and been given such information as is necessary.

7.1.1 The Company will instruct the Funeral Director to undertake the funeral in accordance with the Plan.

7.1.2 The Funeral Director’s charges will be settled by the Company (subject to 3.1.4 above).

7.2 The Company will only instruct the Funeral Director if at the date of death an agency or service agreement is in force between the Company and the Funeral Director, which the Funeral Director is able to perform. If this is not the case then the Company will pay the cost of any other Funeral Director appointed by the Plan Holder’s Personal Representatives provided that:

7.2.1 The services are in accordance with the Plan; and

7.2.2 The Funeral Director’s charges for the funeral (including, without limitation, costs, due to third parties) do not exceed the price then chargeable by the Company for the nearest equivalent funeral plan at the date of death and are reasonable.

7.3 All arrangements for the funeral will be made direct between the Plan Holder’s Personal Representatives and the Funeral Director.

 

8. PAYMENT BY INSTALLMENTS

8.1 As an alternative to making a single payment you may if you wish pay by installments. If you have selected the installment Option, your payments should be shown on the Payment Form. Payment plans are listed in the price list.

8.2 Installments are to be paid monthly on (day can be specified by the Plan Holder).

8.3 If you choose to pay by installments you are not contractually bound to make them. However, unless all installments under the Plan are paid then the Company will be under no obligation to provide or procure the services of the Plan.

8.4 If any installment is not paid on the stipulated date in the Payment Form the Company reserves the right to cancel the Plan on giving you not less than fourteen days prior written notice. No refund is given on plans that are cancelled by the Company as a direct result of non-payment of installments by the Plan Holder.

8.5 If the Plan has not been cancelled under Clause 8.4 above or Clause 9 below then in the event of the death of the Plan Holder before all the installments are paid, the Company will apply the balance remaining towards the cost of your funeral inc any additional sums due in accordance with these Terms. The Plan Holder’s Representative will be liable to pay any shortfall.

9. CANCELLATION

9.1 Whether you are paying for the Plan by installments or in a lump sum you or your Personal Representatives have the right to cancel the Plan upon giving to the Company written notice to this effect within 28 days after the Company has signed the Agreement and issued a membership certificate. All payments made to the date of termination will be repaid to the Plan Holder or Representatives (without interest). In these circumstances no Cancellation Charge will be applied.

9.2 After the said 28 day period, you or your Personal Representatives may request the Company to refund the cost of the Plan (if paid for in full) whereupon the Company may in its absolute discretion refund the amount paid less its Cancellation Charge on the whole or any part of the cost of the Plan and also (in the case of a Plan providing for a burial), less the costs incurred by the Company in purchasing or reserving a burial plot.

9.3 Upon death of the Plan Holder no refund will be given if the Plan is cancelled after a funeral director has been instructed by the Company.

9.4 The cancellation charge is £395.

 

10. GENERAL

10.1 The Company is not liable for any acts or omissions of any Funeral Director appointed pursuant to Clause 7.1

10.2 The Company cannot be held responsible for the acts or omissions of the Funeral Director appointed under clause 7.1 unless the Company has been negligent in its appointment.

10.3 All sums received by the Company constitute a pre-payment towards the cost of the funeral described in the Plan in accordance with the provisions of these terms. Neither the Plan Holder nor respective Representatives shall be entitled to any interest on or income from any part of the sum paid to the Company in connection with the Plan and any right which you or your Personal Representatives may have to any refund of sums paid are governed strictly by the terms of this Agreement. The sums which you pay to the Company in connection with the Plan will be paid directly to the Trustees of the Assist Funeral Plans Trust Fund, in accordance with the requirements of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (Regulated Activities Order 2001). The Company is entitled solely to any growth in or interest on or income from the sums paid, which entitlement the Company has settled in accordance with the terms of the Trust.

10.4 The Company shall have no further obligations to the Plan Holder or your respective Personal Representatives, whether financial or otherwise, save as expressly set out in these Terms.

10.5 You may not assign your rights and obligations under the Agreement.

10.6 Any notice or other information required or authorized by these terms shall be given by hand or sent by first class pre-paid post to the other party at the address specified in the Agreement or to such other address as that party may notify the other in writing from time to time in accordance with this provision.

10.7 The provisions of clauses 4, 5 and 6 are made for the benefit of a Funeral Director and, accordingly, it may in its own right enforce these provisions in accordance with the Provisions of the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999 (‘the Act’), This Agreement does not, however, create any other rights enforceable by any person who is not a party to it (including, without limitation, a Plan Holder where you are purchasing the Plan not for yourself but for some other person) under the Act.

10.8 This Agreement shall be governed by and construed in all respects in accordance with the Laws of England and each party hereby submits to the nonexclusive jurisdiction of the English Courts.

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