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, then you are still the plan holder.
- 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
- 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 change who the beneficiary is at any time by writing to us, though you remain the plan holder and responsible for payments. 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 23 to 25 will go to them.
4. What is included in my plan?
- 24/7 help and guidance
- Collection anytime from any location in Great Britain including; hospital, coroner, hospice, care or nursing home and even a personal residence.
- A simple traditional coffin
- Care of deceased at our mortuary facilities including the removal of artificial devices such as a pacemaker
- Suitable transport to the crematorium
- A simple, unattended cremation at one of our trusted partner crematoriums
- 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. 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 10 years
If you choose to pay by monthly instalment, you will pay an extra 2.9% of the total cost of the plan each year, charged monthly. This is to help account for inflation over the duration of the term. 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 16 and 17.
7. Paying in full
You can pay by debit/credit card, cheque or bank transfer. We will send you your plan documents within 7 working days though you will be completely covered as soon as payment is received.
8. Paying by instalment
If you choose to pay for your plan by monthly instalments up to 10 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 charged monthly. Instalments will be collected monthly by Direct Debit. If the beneficiary dies before all instalments have been paid, you or your representative will need to pay the balance before we can fulfil any of our duties under this agreement.
9. 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 your payments.
10. 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 the instalment charge as detailed in section 6.
11. Can I pay my plan balance early?
Yes, you can pay the rest of the balance on your plan at any time. This is calculated by taking away from the total cost of the plan, the total amount you have paid to date less any instalment charges. Simply contact us and we can tell you the balance left to pay.
12. Can I make additional payments?
Yes. As this will reduce the remaining balance, you can 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 left to pay.
13. 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 120 months.
14. 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 our cancellation fee 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 12 months in total during the whole term of your plan.
15. 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.
16. Our Trust
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.
17. 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. The Trust accounts are audited each year and an actuarial verification is performed on the trust every 3 years as a minimum.
18. 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.
19. 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.
20. 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 and provide us with the certificate for cremation (the green form) that will be given to them. We will provide help and guidance throughout. There will also be some simple 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 arrange the collection.
21. Can other changes be made?
We do not know what is going to happen in the future. There may be a change in the law or tax rules that affects the way we carry out the cremation. For example, funeral services are currently VAT exempt and any change to this policy could have an effect on industry prices. This may mean we need to apply extra charges. If there are extra charges, we will work to keep these as low as possible, but we may have to ask you or your representative to pay for these.
22. 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.
23. How can I cancel my plan?
Subject to the refund policy in section 24. 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.
24. 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. You or the representative can still cancel any time prior to a cremation taking place. However, if you or the representative cancel after the 60 day cooling-off period, we will refund the total amount paid less our cancellation fee which is £350. 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 we cancel your plan in accordance with section 25 then we will refund you the total amount paid less our cancellation fee which is £350. If the total sum paid is less than our cancellation fee or any deductions, then you will receive nothing. Any refunds will be paid to you or your estate.
25. Our right to cancel your plan
In addition to section 3, we can cancel if;
- we are not able to carry out what is included in your plan due to circumstances beyond our control (in which case you will receive a full refund of any monies paid).
- you do not keep up the monthly payments on your plan and 2 monthly instalments have been missed. If you are having difficulty paying, then it is possible for us to pause the plan as referred to in section 14.
26. How do I make a complaint?
If you wish to make a complaint, you should contact us as soon as possible using the details at the end of this document.
27. Managing a complaint
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.
28. 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 and Wales. If any part of the agreement does not apply, the rest of the agreement still stands. This agreement is only for you. No other person (including your representative or anybody else you name as a beneficiary to your plan) has any right to bring a claim under any term of this agreement.
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