Refused Bereavement Grant: Would You Qualify?

Grieving student nurse Refused Bereavement Grant.

Beccy Oxley is in thousands of pounds worth of debt after being refused government help for her dad’s funeral. She is a student nurse and as next of kin, she was asked to pay for the funeral which cost £3,500.  Unfortunately, the Department of Work and Pensions decided that the 30 hour a week unpaid placement she is required to do as part of her nursing course, according to the Liverpool Echo.

At just 24 and a fairly penniless student, you would have thought she would have been a prime candidate for DWP support.  But the rules seem to be set up to avoid payment if at all possible. On the face of it the Bereavement Grant should be there to support people such as Beccy. Instead, she will have a substantial debt to support whilst she continues her training as a nurse to help the rest of us.


In an ideal world, we would all have prepaid funeral plans rather than having to rely on either a paupers funeral or hoping to obtain a Bereavement Grant or plunge friends or relatives into debt.  In early 2017 the cost of a funeral is typically around the level of debt Beccy was saddled with.

Here are the contact details to apply for a  bereavement grant.

Call the Bereavement Service helpline.

  • Telephone: 0345 606 0265
  • Welsh language: 0345 606 0275
  • Textphone: 0345 606 0285
  • Welsh language: 0345 606 0295

Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm

Bereavement and widows’ benefits if you’re abroad
Telephone: +44 191 21 87608
Find out about call charges

Or write to:
Department for Work and Pensions
Bereavement and widows’ benefits
International Pension Centre
Tyneview Park
NE98 1BA

You must include your:

  • full name
  • date of birth
  • National Insurance number
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