Who Is Responsible For Paying For A Funeral?

When the deceased passes away, he or she often pays for the funeral. If he or she had a life insurance policy, this policy often includes funeral expenses. If your loved one had an estate, the money to pay for the funeral expenses may come out of it. Also, the deceased might have already paid for a funeral package at a funeral home like Aspen Mortuaries ahead of time. However, if none of this has been done, you may need to figure out how your loved one's funeral expenses will be paid for.

Splitting the Bill

If the family members need to pay for the funeral expenses, there may be one family member who offers to pay for all funeral expenses. In other cases, each family member might choose to contribute. However, the question is whether an individual is considered a family member for this purpose. For example, you might not know if a stepfather should contribute. Also, you might wonder if a second cousin who isn't very close should contribute.

Whether or not a family member should contribute is often handled informally. For example, a family member might choose to contribute because he or she would feel uncomfortable attending the funeral without having paid for it. Also, if there is a family member who cannot contribute, such as someone who has fallen on hard times financially, he or she might not be expected to contribute.

Making the Payment

Whoever arranges the funeral pays the final bill. This is most often the next-of-kin or a spouse. In some states, there may even be a legal obligation to pay for a funeral depending on your relationship to the deceased. 

Turning to the Community

When the family cannot afford to pay for the funeral, you may turn to the community for help. For example, if you are a part of a church, you may ask if anyone from your church would be willing to help. There are also online crowdfunding sources you may be able to turn to. 

If there is no one who can pay for the funeral, the cost of the funeral may be paid for by the coroner's office. In this case, you sign offer rights and responsibilities and you have no control over how your loved one's remains are handled. In this case, the remains are usually cremated and the ashes are returned if you pay a fee. But regardless, there is a way that funeral expenses will be paid for.