Do not pay the funeral invoice.

Do not pay it on your credit card, do not pay it from savings.

It is not the Executor's responsibility to pay the funeral invoice from their own funds.



What no one is telling you

At least once a month I explain this to somebody, and they tell me that the funeral home did not share this information with them.

If you take the funeral invoice to the bank, and the deceased person has money in their bank account, the bank will pay the funeral home directly.

The bank will not re-pay you, even if you prove you paid it.

Once the funeral home convinces you to pay it on your credit card it is too late.  You have to wait for Probate, and then for the bank to release the funds to the Estate after receiving Probate, and that process takes 6-9 months.

The bank will not repay the person who paid the funeral invoice.

The bank will pay the funeral home directly.



What is the process?

Get the funeral home to issue you a proper invoice, a tax invoice not a quote.

Walk into any branch of the bank that the deceased person banked with.

Give the invoice to the teller.  Tell them you are organising the funeral, ask them to arrange for the funeral invoice to be paid from the deceased person's funds.

The bank will forward a cheque directly to the funeral home.

I have never experienced a bank refusing to do this unless there were no funds in the bank account, or the invoice wasn't an invoice or didn't clearly identify the deceased person.

If there are insufficient funds in the bank account to pay the whole balance, get the bank to pay as much as they can from what is in the account.

There are other options too, like superannuation.  Don't let the funeral home convince you to pay it yourself immediately to avoid their large "late fee".  Get legal advice.



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