Information

Funeral directors: draft code of practice

The draft statutory code of practice for funeral directors (updated January 2023) will be key to underpinning the statutory inspection of funeral directors in Scotland. Funeral directors will be inspected against this code once it comes into force.


Planning the funeral service according to the wishes of the deceased and the bereaved

Deceased and client identification and who can be involved in making arrangements

61. Where the deceased has not set out before dying who should arrange their funeral the funeral director must make the client aware of the next of kin hierarchy set out in the 2016 Act (section 65 for adults, section 66 for children). It is then for the client (or any other individual who wishes to organise the burial or cremation) to determine whether they have the legal right to apply for the burial or cremation.

62. The funeral director must ensure that they and their staff are sufficiently knowledgeable and experienced to assist the client in making informed choices about the goods and services they offer. This must include an ability to describe, both orally and in writing, the range and location of options for burial and cremation if requested.

63. The funeral director must provide the client with a clear and comprehensive descriptions of their goods and services.

Estimates and confirmations

64. To enable the client to make an informed decision about the goods and services they would like before the client makes a decision the funeral director must:

  • provide the client with full and detailed information on the full range of funeral goods and services available.
  • make accurate, itemised and up to date price lists available to the client.
  • endeavour to ensure that the client understands the full range of goods and services available and the prices and third party fees (disbursements) such as burial or cremation costs.
  • provide the client with a description and a total price of funeral goods and services offered.

65. Once the client has made a decision about the goods and services they would like the funeral director must:

  • provide written or electronic confirmation of the funeral arrangements and a written or electronic itemised estimate of all funeral charges including third party fees (disbursements) where known.
  • provide the client with a written or electronic itemised final account that is comparable with the estimate provided.

66. All changes from estimate to final bill must be clearly described, prior notified and agreed to by the client. The funeral director must be able to account for any changes via an audit trail.

Contact

Email: burialandcremation@gov.scot

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