Renfrewshire Council

National Assistance Act Funerals

On rare occasions, people die within Renfrewshire with no traceable relatives or Executor to organise funeral arrangements for the deceased person. Where it appears that no arrangements for the funeral of a deceased person have been, or are being made, using powers in Section 87 of the Burial and Cremation (Scotland) Act 2016, Renfrewshire Council may step in to make suitable arrangements for the funeral. This service is only provided in circumstances where no one else is arranging a funeral and the person has died within Renfrewshire. If the person has died out with the Council's boundary you should contact the Local Authority where the person died.

The arrangements will only be for the provision of a simple but dignified basic funeral. No funeral notices, service, flowers or funeral cars will be provided.  Renfrewshire Council will not provide financial assistance to arrange a funeral. We will make the arrangements and use an undertaker appointed by us. All funeral costs will be recovered from the deceased's estate and are usually paid before any other debts.

If you wish to arrange a funeral for the deceased person and require financial assistance enquiries concerning this should be directed to the following agencies:

1. Scottish Government

The Scottish Government has launched a new Funeral Expense Assistance benefit called the Funeral Support Payment, which has replaced the UK Funeral Expenses Payment.

Funeral Support Payment helps pay for funeral costs if you live in Scotland. You can use the payment towards funeral costs for a baby, child or adult. This includes babies who were stillborn.

It usually will not cover the full cost of the funeral but it should help pay for some costs. It can be paid either to you or the funeral director who's helping you plan the funeral.

Only one person can get Funeral Support Payment for the funeral.

You will not be eligible if you've already had other government support for the funeral, this includes:

  •  Funeral Expenses Payment (England or Wales)
  •  Funeral Payment (Northern Ireland)
  •  Your hospital arranging and paying for your baby's funeral if you had a stillbirth

Please see Funeral support payment - how to apply  for further information.

2. Other Agencies/Charities

Benevolent Fund

Benevolent funds are charitable funds, trusts and societies established by trades, professions, religious institutes, armed/civilian services, charities or members of local communities. They may be able to help you towards the cost of arranging a funeral.

Useful links:

SSAFA (Armed Forces Charity), SSAFA, 4 St Dunstan's Hill, London, EC3R 8AD - Tel: 020 7403 8783. Volunteers will help you seek financial assistance.

Child Funeral Charity, Unit 1, The Shield Office Centre, 186a Station Road, Kettering, NN15 5NT - Tel: 01480 276088.

British Gas Energy Trust, Freepost, British Gas Energy Trust - Tel: 01733 421021. May offer payments for people who having trouble paying outstanding funeral expenses. You can apply for this grant on its website.

Citizens Advice Scotland Tel: 03454 040506

Queen's and Lord Treasurer's Remembrancer

When a person dies and has no relatives that can be traced, the Queen's and Lord Treasurer's Remembrancer (QLTR) will claim the estate on behalf of the Crown. They will investigate to determine if the estate has any net asset. Further information on the role of the QLTR can be found on their website.


No information has been referred or is due to be referred to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (Ultimus Haeres Unit) as we were unaware of any assets or heritable estates associated with the funerals.  The Council does not hold any information on the value of the estate of the deceased person. The Council do not trace relatives of the deceased and we do not work with any genealogists.  

Funeral List

Details of all such funerals arranged through the National Assistance Act by Renfrewshire Council since April 2014 are available to view in the related documents section. 


0300 300 0380