Understanding Life Insurance & Final Expenses
If your loved ones depend on your income for their daily needs, life insurance offers you the peace of mind that they’ll have the financial support they need when you’re no longer here for them. One substantial way life insurance makes a difference is with final expenses.
These are the costs your loved ones will have to pay for burial fees, memorial services, cemetery charges, and other items associated with your passing. According to Eric Vandermeersch, the founder and CEO of Basic Funerals, the average cost for after-death arrangements in Canada is $8,500.
What specifically are you paying? Here’s a quick breakdown:
Death certificate (Up to $22 depending on city/province) and registration (Approx. $55)
You must pay for the cost of the certificate to register your death and obtain a death certificate legally. Your loved ones require the certificate to claim insurance and settle your estate. They will also require this document to receive any benefits they may be entitled to as beneficiaries.
Body transfer services ($100 or more)
It covers the cost of transporting your body from the place of your death to the funeral home or crematorium. Transportation can be costly if you die outside of the province where you will be buried or cremated.
Casket ($700 to $3,000 and beyond) or urn ($20 to $200)
Casket and urn prices vary greatly depending on your personal preference. You can opt for a simple casket for several hundred dollars or choose an ornate one that costs thousands. Likewise, one can purchase a simple urn for as low as $20, while more decorative keepsake urns can cost hundreds of dollars.
Body preparation ($150 to $550)
This cost covers all the processes necessary to get your body ready for visitation. You must also consider the price to arrange burial or cremation. This cost can include bathing, embalming, dressing, and applying cosmetics if necessary.
Funeral and memorial services ($2,000 and higher)
Depending on the location and number of family members and guest accommodation, the actual cost of formal ceremonies can be the most significant after-death expense. If licensed memorial services staff must attend, this can be costly for the family.
If these expenses would be a severe hit to your bank account, then term life or whole life insurance is worth the investment. When you purchase your policy, you will name a beneficiary for the policy. This person should understand your desire to use a portion of the death benefit to cover these final expenses. You may even be able to designate the funeral home you prefer as the beneficiary for final expenses.
Talk to your insurance broker to discuss this option! They can go through the steps to take to protect your family’s financial future if you are no longer here to support them.