Funerals are emotional occasions. It’s an event where we mourn our departed loved ones. It may sound gory to some, but funerals are something everyone should prepare for. Not just emotionally, but financially as well.

Funeral services are definitely expensive, and it adds difficulty to the loved ones of the deceased. So a common question many people have is, “Does Medicare cover funeral expenses?” In this article, we answer the question in clear, plain English. You will also find the average costs of funeral services, as well as other helpful info.

Does Medicare Cover Funeral Expenses?

The short answer is, no, Medicare will not cover the cost of funeral services.

Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Part B) does not provide coverage for funeral and burial expenses.

Medicare Advantage plans (Medicare Part C) also do not pay for funeral and burial expenses. While these plans usually cover things that Original Medicare does not, we are not aware of any Part C plans that pay for funeral expenses.  

Because Medicare does not provide coverage for funeral expenses, it is essential to know how much they usually cost.

How Much Do Funeral and Burial Services cost?

Funeral services, including the burial process and installation of a headstone, can cost between $6,000 to $10,000 in the United States. Here is a guide on how much do funeral services cos, on averaget:

  • The funeral director’s services may cost $1,500
  • A casket may cost $2,300
  • Embalming of the deceased may cost $500
  • The venue may cost $500
  • The gravesite may cost $1,000
  • Digging of the grave may cost $600
  • An outer burial container may cost $1,000
  • A headstone may cost $1,500

The total cost is nearly $8,900. However, you may also have additional expenses like flowers.

Other Options to Help Pay for Funeral Expenses

Though Medicare does not cover funeral expenses, you can get help from other organizations or agencies with regards to your funeral expenses. Here are some organizations that can help you with your funeral expenses:

  • Trust savings often operate like bank accounts, and some funeral homes accept payments from specific types of trust funds.
  • Burial Insurance can help cover the expenses of a funeral. However, it may charge a monthly premium or require down payments or recurring payments throughout the year.
  • Social Security benefits may give a one-time lump sum payment to the Social Security recipient’s spouse or child to help in the funeral expenses. The exact amount of what Social Security will provide is established by the Social Security Administration.

We hope that this article has helped shed some light on how much funeral expenses costs and how you can better prepare financially.

Note: Medicare coverage changes all the time. And your specific coverage may vary from plan to plan for Medicare Advantage and Medigap plans. Always be sure to double check with your health care provider and/or Medicare insurance provider about what your plan covers and what it does not.

Additional Info on Medicare Coverage

This article is part of our series on “What does Medicare cover?”

Also, you can check out other articles in this series including: Does Medicare cover plantar fasciitis?

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