Bereavement Payments & Financial Support for Funerals

You can never fully prepare for the feelings of loss and grief that follow the death of a loved one. The pressure to plan a funeral during this time can be overwhelming – especially if covering the cost of their funeral is a challenge.

Our caring women Funeral Specialists have compiled a list of financial assistance or entitlements you may wish to explore – from private bonds and prepaid funerals to various government-assisted Centrelink bereavement payments.

Funeral bereavement payments

Funeral bond

Your loved one may have organised a funeral bond (aka funeral investment). Funeral bonds are managed investments that may increase or decrease over time. While they have benefits, there are strict rules attached. The investment company can usually only release a bond once the individual has passed. In many circumstances it must be forwarded to the individual’s estate or sometimes the funeral director, and generally they can only be used to pay for funeral costs. We recommend speaking to a funeral bond manager or financial advisor about your individual circumstances.

Pre-paid funerals

The thought of pre-planning a funeral for yourself or another may be uncomfortable initially, but there are advantages to consider. For example, a pre-paid funeral lets you plan how you want your ceremony carried out and pay for it ahead of time, taking the burden off loved ones.

For example, when you purchase a pre-paid Guardian Plan funeral through White Lady Funerals, you can decide how you’re remembered. You can either pay in full when you purchase the plan or spread the cost out over time with an initial 30% deposit, followed by 12, 24 or 36 monthly instalments. And you pay for the event at today’s prices, avoiding inflation.

Guardian Plan and White Lady Funerals are both proudly part of InvoCare – a leading provider of funeral services in Australia.

Guardian Plan is a funeral bond issued by the Over Fifty Guardian Friendly Society Limited (the Society) ABN 81 087 649 063 AFSL 524353.

Centrelink funeral payments

Insurance policies, funeral bonds or pre-paid funerals may not be suitable options for everyone. If your funds are limited, you may be eligible for Centrelink bereavement or funeral payments through Services Australia via Centrelink.

Services Australia have various payments and services that may help, depending on your circumstances, financial situation and relationship with your loved one.

Find out what help is available

Financial support if you’ve lost your partner

If your partner dies, you may be eligible for a Centrelink lump sum bereavement payment. To be eligible, usually you both must have been on a pension or receiving an income support payment for at least the past 12 months.

If you’re not on Centrelink, options may still be available. You may be eligible for an income support payment, such as Jobseeker Payment or Youth Allowance.

You may be eligible for a Pension Bonus Bereavement Payment if your partner was registered for the Pension Bonus Scheme. With this payment, you might not need to be receiving any income support. We recommend visiting the Services Australia website for up-to-date information about eligibility requirements and other payment support that might be available to you.

Bereavement payment for carers

Depending on your circumstance, carers may also be eligible for a Carer Allowance Bereavement Payment.

To determine the payment you may be eligible to receive as a carer, go to Centrelink’s online Payment and Service Finder.

If your loved one was single

The allowance process for singles is different. Generally, any government assistance stops on the day they pass, and the executor of the state can access any remaining funds from their bank account.

Find out more on how to access payments for singles here.

Bereavement payment for stillborn babies

Money won’t ease the devastating heartbreak of a stillborn birth. However, it may bring a fraction of comfort to know that financial help is available. You may be eligible for a bereavement payment if your child is stillborn.

Find out how to claim Stillborn Baby Payment here.

Financial assistance if your child dies

Experiencing the death of a child is one of life’s greatest tragedies, but there is help available. Call the Family’s Line and talk to a trained professional to discuss your circumstances. They can explain any payments you may be entitled to, along with support services available for you.

Find out how to claim benefits when a child passes here.


Ready to start planning?