Money / Insurance. The funeral insurance contract: how does it work?

A provident product, the purpose of the funeral insurance contract is to settle in advance the financing and the terms of your funeral. It should not be confused with death insurance, which serves to protect loved ones in the event of premature death. Taken out with an insurance company or a bank, the funeral contract takes two forms.

The capital contract

The first is a financing contract intended to guarantee funeral expenses. It designates a beneficiary who, at the time of the death of the insured, will receive the amount saved.

Since July 2013, the law provides that the capital constituted be allocated for the sole purpose of organizing the subscriber’s funeral; only sums exceeding their cost can be used as the beneficiary wishes.

The insured also has the choice of directly designating a funeral company to which the capital will be paid. Be careful, however: the capital may prove to be insufficient due to the increase in funeral prices. According to UFC-Que Choisir, between 2014 and 2019, the average prices for burial and cremation increased by 14% and 10% respectively.

The French Funeral Information Association (AFIF) noted a 48% increase between 2006 and 2016. Although in principle it is a simple savings product, this type of contract can however, provide for certain guarantees of assistance such as the repatriation of the body of the deceased or the transport of the family.

Provide benefits

The second type of contract, known as “advance funeral payment” allows both the financing and the organization of the funeral. If it does not have to be dictated by the insurer, the service provider (funeral director) must still be contracted by him, because he happens to be the beneficiary. As such, he is required to comply with the provisions contained in the contract.

Two formulas exist. The contract in standardized services offers only few choices to the subscriber, if not the type of ceremony and the future of the body (burial or cremation). For the rest, whether it is the coffin, the tombstone or other products, everything is imposed.

Unlike the contract for personalized services which allows him to express all his wishes: conduct of the ceremony, choice of the coffin, acquisition of a concession, etc. In this case, it is subscribed after having chosen and met a funeral operator who must draw up an estimate covering all of your requests.

The contract must also, conversely, detail what is not covered and mention the possibility of modifying the services. Be careful, however, of the application fees, which can be high.

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