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Public health funerals and arrangement of burials


Public health funerals

When someone dies and there is no known next of kin, we have a responsibility under the Burial and Cremation (Scotland) Act 2016 to make arrangements for the remains to be buried or cremated. These are sometimes referred to as public health funerals. We have powers to recover the cost of the funeral from the estate of the deceased.

Help with funeral costs

If the deceased's family want to arrange the funeral but cannot afford to pay they should contact the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). The DWP can pay a funeral payment to qualifying applicants, for example the partner, close relative or friend of the deceased, if they are on qualifying benefits or tax credits.

Page last updated:
16 Mar 2023

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