Age UK Condemned For Promoting Expensive Funerals To The Elderly

Here is an article that was published last week. Following the Age UK, E.On tariff report, funeral directors knew that it was only a matter of time before this too hit the headlines.
 
Age UK funeral plans are Dignity Funerals Ltd funeral plans. Dignity are the largest funeral service provider in the UK. This is owing to their Pre-need (Funeral Plan), Funeral and Crematoria Divisions. They are the most expensive funeral service provider in the UK.
 
Within Weston there is a Dignity Funeral Branch – Although many wouldn’t know as Dignity acquire independent, family businesses and keep the family name.
 
Weston Crematorium is also owned by Dignity, so by using the services of the Dignity funeral branch and the Dignity crematorium, one would be facing a double edged sword by way of cost.
 
Dignity have claimed in this article that there are more guarantees to an Age UK/Dignity Funeral Plan than any other. This is completely untrue.
 
At Nigel Groves Funeral Directors we use Golden Charter to administer out funeral plans. While they have a recommended cost for us to sell at, we have the freedom to use our own prices which in some cases can be up to £1000 less.
 
Golden Charter/Our funeral plans are no less guaranteed or secure than that of Dignity/Age UK.
 
This is yet another article that highlights once again the importance of taking the time to speak to and meet the funeral directors in your town.
 
If you want to purchase a funeral plan, I would only ever suggest that you buy it from a funeral director.
 
If you have purchased a Dignity or Age UK funeral plan within the last two years we’d be more than happy to look over it for you as there is a very high chance that by cancelling the plan and re-purchasing with us, you’d be walking away with up to £1000 in your pocket.
 
 
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/age-uk-condemned-for-promoting-expensive-funerals-to-the-elderly-a6863476.html
 
 
The charity-branded funeral plans are provided by Advance Planning, a subsidiary of Dignity, a FTSE 250 company
·         Jonathan Owen
·         Tuesday 9 February 2016
·         8 comments
 
Age UK has been criticised by campaigners for accepting millions of pounds to promote a particular funeral firm - which allegedly charges significantly more than some rivals.

The charity-branded funeral plans are provided by Advance Planning, a subsidiary of Dignity, a FTSE 250 company.

Last year 18,000 of the funeral plans were sold – with Age UK Enterprises receiving £9.4m in return. Dignity makes revenues of more than £30m a year from the funerals.

The Age UK funeral packages are among the most expensive on the market, with several other firms offering funeral plans for hundreds of pounds less.

The charity’s basic funeral plan costs £3,495 - more than £200 more expensive than the Co-operative Funeralcare’s basic package.

The price for Age UK’s ‘standard’ funeral is £3,845 – which is more than £300 more expensive than an equivalent plan offered by Golden Charter, according to an analysis by Which? in December 2015.

Rosie Inman-Cook, manager of the Natural Death Centre, a charity which advises people on how to arrange their own funerals, said Age UK should do more to tell people that cheaper options were available. “They could be getting far better value for money elsewhere and spend around a thousand pounds,” she said.

One funeral industry source described the costs of the Age UK funeral plans as “disproportionately high,” and added: “I do believe that as a charity they should be looking for a more proportionately priced product.”

Age Concern, which merged with Help the Aged to become Age UK in 2009, previously held a minority shareholding in Advance Planning.

Last night Dignity stood by its funeral products. A spokesman said: “The Age UK Funeral Plan has some of the strongest guarantees in the market with unrivalled service and transparent customer terms.  We believe the combination of price and quality makes the Age UK Funeral Plan the best value on the market.”

An Age UK spokesman said: “Not all funeral plans are the same so it’s best not to compare on price alone. The Age UK Funeral Plans have almost unique levels of cover including guaranteeing cremation costs - and ensure there are no hidden costs, to provide great value.

One funeral industry source described the costs of the Age UK funeral plans as “disproportionately high,” and added: “I do believe that as a charity they should be looking for a more proportionately priced product.”

Age Concern, which merged with Help the Aged to become Age UK in 2009, previously held a minority shareholding in Advance Planning.

Last night Dignity stood by its funeral products. A spokesman said: “The Age UK Funeral Plan has some of the strongest guarantees in the market with unrivalled service and transparent customer terms.  We believe the combination of price and quality makes the Age UK Funeral Plan the best value on the market.”

An Age UK spokesman said: “Not all funeral plans are the same so it’s best not to compare on price alone. The Age UK Funeral Plans have almost unique levels of cover including guaranteeing cremation costs - and ensure there are no hidden costs, to provide great value.