Funeral plan regulation - July 2022

The UK’s financial watchdog the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is reforming the Funeral Plan Sector with effect from 29 July 2022.

The FCA considers that reform is needed because certain elderly and often vulnerable customers have been the subject of unfair practices involving high pressure sales tactics and cold calls.

F A Albin & Sons Ltd has never and will never engage in such unethical, unprofessional practices. Consequently, FA Albin & Sons Ltd welcomes FCA regulation and its aims to ensure that funeral plan sales are ethical, meet the needs of customers and protect the funds of pre-paid funeral customers.

With effect from 29 July 2022 funeral plan providers can only sell funeral plans or undertake existing funeral plans if they are authorised to do so by FCA.

F A Albin & Sons Ltd has submitted an application to FCA with a view to becoming authorised. Its application along with other funeral plan providers is currently being processed.

Customers of funeral plan providers are therefore understandably concerned that the funds that they have deposited may be at risk in the event that their funeral plan provider cannot achieve authorisation.

F A Albin & Sons Ltd has been operating its Pre Arranged Funeral Plan Trust for over 30 years. All monies paid by its customers for their funeral plans are placed in the Trust which operates separate designated bank accounts. The deposits paid by its customers are therefore completely ring fenced. Under the terms of the Trust Deed the beneficiaries of the Trust Fund are its customers who have paid their deposits into the Fund not F A Albin & Sons Ltd.

F A Albin & Sons Ltd is able to confirm that currently the asset value of the investment portfolio owned by the Trust Fund exceeds the total value of deposits received and therefore all of the monies paid into the Trust by its customers are fully protected. In addition the Trust is contractually backed by F A Albin & Sons Ltd. In the unlikely event that the investment values fall to a level that cannot meet the funeral plan commitments F A Albin & Sons Ltd will make up any shortfall so the deposits that have been paid into the Trust are fully safeguarded.