As the funeral sector heads towards a shift in how it is regulated, East Midlands funeral director A.W. Lymn is reassuring customers with pre-paid funeral plans that their funds are “safe and secure.”
From 29 July, all funeral plan providers must be regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in order for them to continue administering pre-paid funeral plans.
If providers fail to become authorised by this point they must stop administering funeral plans and have taken steps to transfer any existing plans to a regulated provider or refund customers accordingly. Similarly, all intermediaries must become authorised or an appointed representative of an authorised firm to continue offering pre-paid funeral plans past 29 July.
A.W Lymn said FCA regulation will give consumers greater protection and confidence when purchasing pre-paid funeral plans. However, some customers have been left out of pocket due to cancelled funeral plans because plan providers are either not applying for authorised status or withdrawing applications.
As the deadline approaches and in light of recent events, A.W. Lymn said it has witnessed an influx of enquiries from concerned pre-paid funeral plan holders.
Catherine Broome, pre-paid funeral plans manager at A.W. Lymn, said: “We are currently having to reassure a number of our customers when it comes to the security of their pre-payment plans.
“At A.W. Lymn, we are proud to have been working with what we believe to be one of the most robust and trusted of plan providers, Ecclesiastical Planning Services, since 2003. We are confident that by 29 July, Ecclesiastical will be authorised by the FCA.”
Broome added: “We fully support the move to make the industry regulated. Unsurprisingly, this has caused some complications for those in the funeral industry. However, despite the hurdles, it will certainly be worth it in the long run.”