Cash assistance for funeral expenses

5 Best Options To Help With Financial Assistance for Funeral Expenses

When a loved one passes away, the financial burden of arranging a funeral can add to the emotional stress. Funerals are often expensive, with costs varying significantly based on whether you choose to bury or cremate the deceased. Fortunately, there are several options for assistance with funeral expenses. This article explores five of the best options, including government assistance, community agencies, and title loans, detailing the requirements for each.

Understanding Funeral Expenses

Assistance for Funeral Expenses and options that are available to you | Phoenix Title LoansWhat are the Costs Involved in a Funeral?

Funeral expenses can vary widely based on personal preferences and cultural practices. The main costs typically include:

  • Casket or Urn: The price of a casket can range from $1,000 to $10,000, while urns generally cost between $50 and $300.
  • Burial Plot: Burial plots can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $4,000 or more.
  • Gravestone: A simple gravestone may cost around $1,000, but more elaborate ones can be much higher.
  • Cremation: The average cost of cremation ranges from $1,000 to $3,000, depending on the services provided.
  • Funeral Home Services: Basic services of a funeral home, including the preparation of the body and coordinating the funeral, can cost between $2,000 and $5,000.
  • Additional Services: These may include embalming, transportation, and ceremony costs, adding another $1,000 to $4,000.

Burial vs. Cremation: A Cost Comparison

  • Burial: Typically more expensive due to the need for a casket, burial plot, and gravestone. Total costs often range from $7,000 to $12,000.
  • Cremation: Generally less costly, with fewer required items and services. The total cost usually falls between $4,000 and $7,000.

Whether you choose a burial or cremation, the costs alone can cause someone financial stress, adding on to a difficult time as it is.  This makes any and all resources available for financial assistance for funeral expenses a helpful necessity, in a monetary sense.

Government Assistance for Funeral Expenses

Social Security Death Benefit

The Social Security Administration offers a one-time death benefit of $255 to the surviving spouse or child of a deceased worker. While this amount is modest, it can help cover some immediate expenses.


  • The deceased must have worked long enough to qualify for Social Security benefits.
  • The claimant must be a surviving spouse living with the deceased at the time of death or a child entitled to benefits based on the deceased’s record.

Veterans Benefits

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs provides burial benefits to eligible veterans, which can include a burial allowance, plot allowance, and reimbursement for funeral costs.


  • The deceased must be an eligible veteran discharged under conditions other than dishonorable.
  • Specific allowances vary based on whether the death was service-connected or non-service-connected.

FEMA Funeral Assistance

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offers funeral assistance for deaths attributed to a federally declared disaster, such as COVID-19.


  • The death must be directly or indirectly related to a federally declared disaster.
  • Proper documentation, including a death certificate and proof of incurred funeral expenses, is required.

Community Agencies and Non-Profit Organizations

Local Charities and Religious Organizations

Many local charities, religious organizations, and community groups offer support services or financial assistance for funeral expenses.


  • Demonstrated financial need and a connection to the community or organization.
  • Application processes vary by organization, often requiring proof of income and residency.

Crowdfunding Campaigns

Platforms like GoFundMe allow families to create online campaigns to raise money for funeral expenses. These campaigns rely on donations from friends, family, and even strangers.


  • Creation of an online campaign detailing the need and amount required.
  • Sharing the campaign widely to reach potential donors.

Title Loans as an Option

Phoenix Title Loans provides assistance for funeral expenses and moreUnderstanding Title Loans

Title loans involve borrowing money against the value of your vehicle. While this option provides quick access to funds, while you are waiting for other assistance to become available.


  • Ownership of a vehicle with a clear and clean title.
  • The vehicle itself, brought in for an assessment to calculate the loan to value.
  • Proof of residence (a current utility bill or mortgage statement).
  • Current and valid Arizona driver’s license with address matching current utility bill.
  • Ability to repay the loan within the specified time frame.

Phoenix Title Loans is here to offer assistance for funeral expenses to cover any extra costs, or cover the expenses while you are still waiting to receive other assistance from government programs, donations and or family and friends.

State and Local Government Programs

State Assistance for Funeral Expenses Programs

Some states offer specific programs to assist with funeral expenses for low-income residents. These programs vary widely by state in terms of available funds and eligibility criteria.


  • Income verification to demonstrate financial need.
  • Residency within the state offering the assistance.

Maricopa County and Municipal Assistance

Local government agencies may also provide financial assistance for funeral expenses. This help is often part of broader programs for low income families.  Maricopa County has a program that can provide as much as $1200.00 towards the funeral expenses, and is paid directly to the funeral home you have chosen within county lines, within 10 – 14 days after the application is approved.  In addition, this assistance goes directly towards the cremation, burial and entombment services, and will not go towards any additional services if they are chosen.


  • Proof of financial hardship and local residency.
  • Funeral home must be registered as a vendor of services in Maricopa County.
  • the contract signed by both the applicant and the funeral home, with itemized list of charges of cremation or burial.
  • Apply online using this link to the Maricopa County Human Services Client Portal.  Family or friends of the deceased are welcome to apply, as long as you meet the requirements.

There are other city and community programs available throughout Arizona.  To check what is available in your area, this link that we are providing, is a resource directory for assistance of funeral expenses from local and state government agencies.

Funeral Insurance

Pre-Need Insurance

Pre-need insurance is a type of life insurance specifically designed to cover most funeral expenses. This insurance is typically purchased in advance and locks in current prices for future services.


  • Purchase of a policy through a funeral home or insurance provider.
  • Regular premium payments to maintain the policy.

Final Expense Insurance

Final expense insurance, also known as burial insurance, provides a lump sum payout upon the policyholder’s death to cover funeral and burial costs.  This assistance for funeral expenses is something that is noted in a living will, or has been shared with close family members.  This is more than just assistance for funeral expenses.  It means that most of the funeral arrangements have already been arranged with the funeral home of their choice.  As a result, their preplanning has removed any concerns their loved ones might have of providing the services they wanted, covering the costs of services and allows them to pay their respects to those they have lost.


  • Application and approval process, similar to life insurance.
  • Payment of regular premiums.


FAQ regarding assistance for funeral expenses.What is the average cost of a funeral in the U.S.? The average cost of a funeral in the U.S. ranges from $7,000 to $12,000 for a burial and $4,000 to $7,000 for cremation.

Can Social Security give any assistance for funeral expenses? Yes, Social Security offers a one-time death benefit of $255 to eligible surviving spouses or children.

What assistance for funeral expenses is available for veterans? Veterans may qualify for burial benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, including a burial allowance and reimbursement for funeral costs.

How can community agencies help with funeral costs? Local charities, religious organizations, and community groups may offer financial assistance or support services to families in need.

Are title loans a good option for covering funeral expenses? Title loans provide quick funds but come with high-interest rates and the risk of losing your vehicle if you cannot repay the loan.

What state programs give assistance for funeral expenses? Some states offer specific programs to assist low-income residents with funeral costs, requiring a minimum of proof of financial need and residency.

Finding Assistance for Funeral Expenses

Finding the needed assistance for funeral expenses can be overwhelming, but several assistance options are available to help ease the financial burden. From government benefits and community support to title loans and insurance, understanding these resources can provide much-needed relief during a difficult time. It’s essential to research and consider each option carefully to choose the best one for your situation.