Basic funeral dead and buried
NEW funeral pricing regulation in NSW attempts to provide greater transparency for the costs of a funeral, but fails to impose a duty on providers to offer an essential service at an affordable price.
Under the new standards every funeral director will be required to provide the price of their “least expensive funeral package”. Funeral directors will have to clearly display this information at each place of business and on any public website maintained by them.
These least-expensive-funeral-packages requirements will replace the basic funeral.
A basic funeral consists of the arrangement and conduct of a funeral service, transport of the deceased to a cemetery or crematorium, the least expensive coffin, compulsory medical certificates and a burial or cremation.
The problem with the basic funerals is that they are not price regulated and that providers are not obliged to offer them.
It was argued that the abolition of the basic funeral from was reasonable as not all funeral directors offer a basic funeral but they do all have a least expensive package.
CPSA argued in its submission on the public consultation draft for the NSW Fair Trading Regulation that offering a least expensive funeral package will not do much in assisting consumers deciding between the affordability and dignity of a funeral service.
The new requirements will commence on 1 February 2020.
Despite the disappointing change in regulation, CPSA remains committed to campaigning for a basic funeral which is price-regulated and which must be offered by all NSW funeral providers.