Catherine Broome, A.W. Lymn (2) (1)-3229d6df

East Midlands Funeral Directors Welcomes New, Rigorous Regulation of Pre-Paid Plans

As the funeral sector heads towards a major shift in how it is regulated, leading independent East Midlands funeral director A.W. Lymn The Family Funeral Service is reassuring customers with pre-paid funeral plans that their funds are safe and secure.

From the 29th of 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 the 29th July.

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.

One of the recent providers to hit the news is Safe Hands, which has gone into administration, leaving the funeral arrangements of more than 45,000 customers in doubt.

As the deadline approaches and in light of recent events, A.W. Lymn has witnessed an influx of enquiries from concerned pre-paid funeral plan holders. Catherine Broome, who has been the Pre-Paid Funeral Plans Manager at A.W. Lymn for over 25 years, 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 29th July, Ecclesiastical will be authorised by the FCA.”

For more than a century Lymn’s, a fifth-generation family run business, has been helping the bereaved in the region with quality of service and value for money at the heart of its ethos. Operating 27 funeral homes throughout Nottinghamshire and South Derbyshire, A.W. Lymn has helped many families over the years pre-plan their funeral arrangements with the support of trusted providers.

On the introduction of the new FCA rules, Catherine said: “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.”

Catherine believes that the future is positive. She said: “We hope that when regulation is in place, more people feel confident to buy a pre-arranged plan. With Lymn’s unique tailored pre-payment plans, not only are you provided with reassurance that all our funeral director costs are guaranteed, you can also make a contribution towards third party costs such as cremation fees. Plus, you have the opportunity to decide how you want your life to be celebrated.”

A.W. Lymn and its staff are currently participating in a thorough due diligence and training process as part of its application to become an Appointed Representative of Ecclesiastical Planning Services.

“While the funeral industry enters a new chapter, we will continue supporting and informing our customers each step of the way and look forward to playing our part in a regulated industry moving forward,” Catherine added.

Nigel Lymn Rose, Company Chairman at A.W. Lymn, said: “Those who have bought a plan from A.W. Lymn over the last 20 years should now see the value of having chosen our trusted and long-established family firm. Our funeral plan funds remain secure, as does our guarantee of future service. If anyone has concerns, we advise contacting their funeral director or plan provider.”