To clarify the meaning we intend when using certain words in this document, we have explained them for you here:
- When we use the term ‘benefits’ we mean everything that is included in the plan outlined in section 4.
- When we say ‘you’, ‘your’, ‘I’ and ‘my’ we mean the person who is paying for the plan and who the plan is for (plan holder).
- ‘Beneficiary’ means the person who will receive the benefits of this plan when they die. If you have not chosen anybody else to receive the benefits of this plan, then YOU are the beneficiary. If you do nominate someone else, you are still responsible for paying.
- The word ‘representative’ is the person who arranges the funeral for the beneficiary.
- ‘We’, ‘us’ and ‘our’ refer to Celebration of Life Planning Ltd. We are the company that sets up and manages your funeral plan for you. We also provide the benefits of this plan detailed in section 4. From time to time we use other companies within our business group or trusted supply partners to complete aspects of our service.
- ‘Great Britain’ for the purpose of this agreement is mainland England, Wales and Scotland and does not include any islands that are not connected by a bridge or the highlands and islands of Scotland. If you are on the Isle of Wight or Isle of Man you can upgrade your plan by £300 to include collection from and return of ashes back to the island. This can also be paid for by family at the time at the then current rate.
- Your ‘plan’ is an agreement between you and us comprising this document and your plan summary. Your plan summary will confirm the details provided at application and the payment schedule agreed. This will be sent to you with the rest of your plan documents once your order is received.
2. Who can buy a plan?
You must be a UK resident and over 18.
You are the beneficiary unless you nominate someone else. Only one person is entitled to receive the benefits of this plan. You can nominate your spouse or civil partner to be the beneficiary any time as long it does not violate any restrictions stated in section 9. Once the plan is paid in full, you can change the beneficiary to anyone at any time by writing to us. If we have informed the original beneficiary of their previous benefits under this plan, we will advise them of the change. If you die before your nominated beneficiary and payments towards your plan are still due, then we will cancel your plan and any refund will be paid to your estate. If your plan is fully paid for and you die before your nominated beneficiary, then we will transfer the plan into their name and notify them. If they subsequently decide to cancel, then any refund as stated in sections 25 to 27 will go to them.
4. What is included in my plan?
- 24/7 help and guidance
- Collection (including an urgent collection 24/7 if required) within Great Britain
- A simple traditional coffin
- Care of deceased at our mortuary facilities
- The removal of artificial devices such as a pacemaker
- Suitable transport to the crematorium
- A simple, unattended cremation at our trusted partner crematorium
- All disbursements including doctors’ fees (where these apply)
- Return of ashes to a loved one within Great Britain or scattering in the crematorium’s garden of remembrance
5. What is not included in my plan?
This plan is specifically designed for those who want a simple, unattended cremation.
This plan does not include the following:
- The use of a hearse or limousine
- A funeral ceremony at the crematorium
- A minister or celebrant
- The option to choose the crematorium or date/time of cremation.
- Mourners attending the committal
Although these are not included in the plan, they can be purchased for an additional fee by the representative at the time of need.
6. What happens to my money?
We charge you an upfront management fee of £350 for arrangement, administration, plan management and provision of the benefits detailed in section 4. The remainder of the money you pay towards your plan is paid into the Celebration of Life Trust as detailed in section 19. This fee is non-refundable in accordance with sections 25 to 27.
7. How do I pay for my plan?
You can pay for your plan in one of two ways:
- In full
- By monthly instalments spread over a term of up to 5 years
If you choose to pay by monthly instalment, you will pay an extra 4.8% of the total cost of the plan each year, charged monthly. You will be told or shown the total amount payable when you buy the plan. Your money is paid into the Celebration of Life Trust as detailed in sections 19 and 20.
8. Paying in full
You can pay by debit/credit card, cheque or bank transfer. You will be completely covered straight away unless you have paid by cheque then you will be covered as soon as funds have cleared in our bank account.
9. Paying by instalment
If you choose to pay for your plan by monthly instalments up to 5 years, the cost of your plan (less any deposit paid) will be split evenly over the term you have chosen. An instalment charge, as detailed in section 6, will be applicable. Instalments will be collected monthly by Direct Debit. You can take out a plan up to 24 months no matter what age the beneficiary is. You can only choose a plan over a period longer than 24 months if the beneficiary is younger than 80 years of age by the time the plan is expected to finish. The plan is only guaranteed once payment is completed in full or 24 months have passed since ordering your plan as long as payments are up to date and no more than 1 payment was missed in accordance with section 10.
Your plan is at risk if you do not keep up with regular payments.
10. Our Protection Promise
If you choose to pay using our instalment plan then you automatically qualify for our protection promise. This means that if the beneficiary dies after 24 months from the date of order, we will still provide the benefits stated in section 4 even if you have not finished your instalment plan. If you miss 2 or more payments, pause your plan or your payments are not up to date then you will no longer qualify for this benefit - meaning if the beneficiary dies after 24 months and before the plan has finished then the representative will need to pay the remaining balance of the plan or we will refund the total amount paid less the cost of our management fee of £350. If the beneficiary dies in the first 24 months then we can either refund the amount paid in full or the representative can pay the remaining balance. However, if the death is accidental or by violent means and not linked to any illness, disease or the consumption of drugs or alcohol then we will still provide this benefit as long as payments are up to date and no more than 1 payment was missed.
11. When are instalments collected?
You can choose the 1st or 15th day of the month. You can change this date at any time. We reserve the right to amend the dates available for direct debit collections and will inform you if this affects you. If a direct debit fails because of lack of funds, we will automatically try to take the payment again 10 days later. Please make sure that the money is in your account ready to be debited for this time.
12. Can I pay a deposit?
Yes, if you are paying by instalment, you can pay any amount of deposit at the start of your plan. The remainder will be spread evenly over your chosen number of instalments plus any instalment charges.
13. Can I make additional payments?
Yes, you can pay the entire plan off early or you can pay lump sums that will reduce the remaining balance. You can then either reduce the number of instalments left to pay or you can pay a lower monthly amount over the same number of instalments. To reduce the total amount payable you should reduce the number of instalments.
14. Can I change the instalment?
Yes, you can change the monthly amount you pay which will adjust the length of the term. However, the overall length of the term must not exceed 60 months.
15. What if I miss a payment?
It is important that you contact us as soon as possible if you are finding it difficult to pay the instalments. If you miss 2 instalments in a row,
we may cancel your plan and give you back the money paid, less the cost of our management fee if applicable which is £350. If the total amount you have paid is less than this then you will receive nothing. However, at our sole discretion we can pause your plan for a mutually agreed period of time. This can be for no longer than 6 months in total during the whole term of your plan. Please bear in mind that if you miss 2 or more payments or your payments are not up to date, you will not qualify for our protection promise.
16. What documents will I receive?
After receiving your application, if acceptable we will process the payment method chosen and send your plan documents to you within 5 working days. You plan documents will include; a welcome letter, 2 cards with your unique plan number and our contact information, a plan certificate, your plan summary including payment receipt/instalment schedule, terms and conditions and complaints procedure. We will also send you a statement at least every 3 years. This will be sent to you by email unless this is not possible then it will be sent via post.
17. How can I change my details?
It is important that we keep your records up to date. Let us know if you change your name, address, contact information, or any other details that may affect your plan, including those of any beneficiary. We do NOT charge you anything for making changes to your details.
18. What if I lose my documents?
If you need replacement funeral plan documents, simply contact us and we will send you another copy free of charge.
19. Our Trust
In accordance with section 6, your money will be paid into the Celebration of Life Trust. This has been established in accordance with the terms of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 which sets out the legislation that applies to funeral plans. The Trust is completely separate from our business and is managed by independent trustees. When the beneficiary dies, funds are released to us so that the cremation can be provided. Your plan is not an investment and any interest accrued on funds held in Trust is kept by the Trust to ensure our services are guaranteed in the future.
20. Managing the Trust funds
The funds are managed by professional investment managers who are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. They are tasked to invest the funds in accordance with the prudent investment policy of the Trust. The trustees regularly review the investment managers’ performance. Both the Trust accounts are audited and an actuarial verification is performed on the trust every year as a minimum.
21. What if we go out of business?
We are confident this will not happen. However, all plan funds are assets of the Trust which is completely separate from our business and is under the control of the independent trustees. In the unlikely event of our closure we will endeavour to find a suitable replacement provider to fulfil all funeral plans in place. If this is not possible then we will refund you the CPI (Consumer Price Index) linked value of the total cost of the plan from the time of sale. If you have not finished paying for your plan, then we will refund an amount proportionate to what you have paid.
22. Can other changes be made?
If a law changes that has an effect on costs within the industry, such as the addition of VAT; we may need to charge extra but will endeavour to keep the cost down as much as possible.
23. What if I do not use my plan?
If the benefits of this plan have not been claimed 12 months after the death of the beneficiary or their 110th birthday, whichever happens first, we will write to your last known address to see if the plan is still needed. If we do not get a response within 6 months, we will assume that the representative has chosen not to claim the plan benefits. We will then have the right to cancel your plan and keep any payments you have made.
24. What happens after death?
After the death has been verified and confirmed that the funeral director can take over, the representative should contact us by phone. All they will need to do is register the death with the local registrar. We will provide help and guidance throughout. There will also be some simple pre-filled in forms for them to sign that we can send to them by post or email. If the beneficiary has died at home or in a nursing home, we will send a team out straight away to collect the body. If the beneficiary has died in hospital, then we usually have to wait for either the green form from the registrar or the hospital release form before we can collect.
25. How can I cancel my plan?
Subject to the refund policy in section 26 you or the representative can cancel any time prior to a cremation taking place by requesting this in writing. This can be done by email or post using our contact details at the end of this document. Please include your full name, address, plan number and a statement saying that you would like to cancel. We will acknowledge receipt within 14 days of receiving your request. We may require proof of identification and a death certificate (if applicable) to complete any applicable refunds.
26. Refund policy
We give you a 60 day full money back guarantee starting from the date you order your plan. If you cancel within this period and have not used any
of the benefits stated in section 4, you will receive a full refund of any monies paid. If you or the representative cancel after this time then we will deduct £350 for our management fee as detailed in section 6. If we have completed any work towards the benefits of this plan prior to cancellation, then the cost of this work will also be deducted from any refund. If the total sum paid is less than our management fee or any deductions, then you will receive nothing. Any refunds will be paid to you or your estate. If you are paying by monthly instalment whereby a 24 month moratorium period applies, during the first 24 months unless your plan is paid in full you will not receive the full benefits of our protection promise and can cancel anytime to receive a full refund. After this time, your refund will be subject to a deduction of £350 for our management fee.
27. Our right to cancel your plan
We can cancel your plan in accordance with sections 3 and 15 in which case we will refund you the total amount paid less a deduction for our management fee if applicable of £350. We can also cancel if we are not able to carry out what is included in your plan due to circumstances beyond our control (in this instance you will receive a full refund).
28. How do I make a complaint?
If you wish to make a complaint you should contact us as soon as possible in writing. We will be in touch within 5 working days to let you know we have received your complaint. We will keep you updated on our investigation and try to sort out the complaint fully within 28 days. If we cannot finish our investigation within this time, we will update you on our progress. Should you remain dissatisfied you can seek an alternative dispute resolution through the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.
29. Applicable law
This agreement is between you and Celebration of Life Planning Ltd, a company registered in England & Wales number 12631930 at registered office; Celebration of Life, Enterprise House, Ocean Way, SOUTHAMPTON, SO14 3XB. English Law applies to this agreement. Any claim made in a court relating to your plan will be dealt with by the courts of England. If any part of the agreement does not apply, the rest of the agreement still stands.
How to contact us
For all enquiries please contact us using any of the methods below:
Phone within the UK (freephone)
0800 150 3555
Phone (if you are calling from overseas)
+44 2380 989 170
Celebration of Life, Enterprise House, Ocean Way, SOUTHAMPTON, SO14 3XB