The Role of a Funeral Director

About funeral directors

Although there is no legal obligation to appoint a funeral director, most people choose to do so.  They can provide invaluable support and their expert knowledge and guidance can ease the burden of dealing with legal and practical arrangements after a death.

The style, cost and quality of the services they offer vary, so it is advisable to speak to more than one in order to find a company that fits your requirements and budget.

What does a funeral director do?

Funeral directors can take care of most aspects of the funeral, and many are happy to do as much or as little as you like. Some people ask them just to take care of the legal and more unfamiliar tasks (such as collection and storing the body) and then appoint a celebrant to help them plan and lead the service, or they may organise items such as flowers and music themselves.

Here are some of the things a funeral director can do for you:

  • the collection, caring, preparation and timely delivery of the body to the chapel or crematorium (or chosen location for the service)
  • completion of all necessary paperwork
  • assistance, guidance and support
  • recommendation and appointing of a suitable Officiant (for example, a celebrant or priest)
  • advice on location for the service and/or local crematoria
  • choosing and ordering a coffin 
  • arranging transport
  • ordering flowers
  • providing pallbearers
  • organist fee (if required)
  • production of order of service
  • co-ordination of proceedings on the day of the funeral
  • collection of the cremated remains (where relevant)
  • collection and co-ordination of any charitable donations
  • disbursements (payments made on your behalf, for example the cremation or burial fee; the officiants fee; any other items provided by the funeral director)

How whiteballoon can help

whiteballoon’s Information section can help you to decide what type of service you would like and to think about the questions you want to ask your funeral director. Our free Planning Tools enable you to gather and share ideas and information with others involved in making arrangements. If you would like to research some of the items in advance, please go to Inspiration or view the many beautiful photos on our Inspiration Wall.

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