IN FOCUS: Get smart with a prepaid funeral

(Photo supplied)

By Carole Levy

There’s nothing more certain than death and taxes.

So, with the arrival of tax time, funeral director Kaylene Barnard from Simplicity Funerals Werribee is urging locals to think about putting some hard-earned cash towards funeral

According to, the average Australian tax refund is $2112, with 29 per cent of that used to pay bills and another 13 per cent to pay off debt.

Kaylene explains the benefits of putting a tax refund towards a prepaid funeral.

“The average cost of a funeral today is about $6000 and it’s predicted that amount will be more than $13,200 in 24 years’ time, subject to inflation,” she says.

“A prepaid funeral allows people to plan a funeral now and pay for it at today’s rate.

“While the average tax return may not cover the full cost of a funeral, people can spread payments over three years.

“Once a funeral is fully prepaid, there are no additional costs – regardless of the cost in the future.”

As Kaylene says, making end-of-life decisions is never easy and planning a funeral is no exception.

“The reality is there are more than 80 decisions to be made in funeral planning, all in the space of 72 hours – not to mention the added pressure of funding thousands of dollars in a hurry,” she says.

“A prepaid funeral plan offers an attractive mix of benefits for locals wanting to fund their own or a dependant’s funeral costs. A tax refund is a great way to start paying for this expense.”

If you have lost a loved one, what tax issues should be considered?

1. Obtaining a deceased family member’s tax file number

If you have no access to their tax file number, you will need to notify the ATO you are the authorised person. You will need to complete a “notification of a deceased person” form from the ATO website.

2. Date of death tax return

If you are the executor, you may need to complete a date of death tax return on behalf of the deceased person. To determine what forms you may need to complete, visit the ATO website.

3. Deceased estates

If you are a beneficiary, there may be things to consider when completing your personal tax return. Contact the ATO or an accountant.


Simplicity Funerals Werribee, 171A Watton Street, Werribee. Opens 9am-5pm Monday-Friday, weekends by appointment. Inquiries: 9974 2100