The Irish Association of Funeral Directors (IAFD) is the only representative organisation for funeral directors throughout Ireland. It was established in 1979 to promote excellence and expertise in the funeral directing profession and to foster cooperation between its members to enable them to provide a better service to their clients. The IAFD has an established Code of Practice, shown below, which must be followed by all of its members.
CODE OF PRACTICE
It is a Customer Care Charter for the clients of IAFD Funeral Directors, guaranteeing a minimum standard of professional competence, openness and caring for families at what tends to be a vulnerable time for many.
RESPONSIBILITIES TO CLIENTS:
Members shall serve clients with competence and concern for their best interests, whilst at all times maintaining the highest standards of conduct.
Members shall make fair charges for their services, facilities and merchandise.
Confidentiality is the cornerstone of the relationship between Funeral Director and client and all privileged information must be held in the strictest confidence by both Funeral Directors and their staff.
Members must at all times act in a manner that will enhance their reputation as Funeral Directors.
Soliciting funerals is not permitted.
The choice of Funeral Director shall at all times be the prerogative of the family concerned. If two Funeral Directors are called in error by the same family, they must both show a willingness to withdraw and allow the family to decide who is to act on their behalf.
All advertising shall be dignified and in accord with the highest standards.
Members shall assist families in planning a funeral with particular emphasis on the budgetary aspect of the funeral.
Members should have available a complete price list showing their charges for merchandise, services and facilities and also a complete list of the payments they will be required to make on the client’s behalf.
A written confirmation of funeral arrangements and estimate of costs shall be offered to each client at the time of making arrangements, or at the earliest opportunity thereafter. This shall be signed by the client, who must be over 18 years of age. In so doing, the client accepts responsibility for payment of the funeral account and confirms agreement to the arrangements, services and costs listed (subject to any amendments requested and/or agreed with the client) and gives authorisation for the preparation of the deceased (subject to this being discussed and agreed) that the funeral director deems necessary or beneficial. The client further acknowledges that he is duly authorised to make these arrangements for and on behalf of the deceased.
Members shall provide an itemised account showing his charges and the payments made on the client’s behalf, together with settlement terms.
Members shall provide clients with information on the registration of deaths, how to obtain copies of the Death Certificate and information on the availability of Death Grants and other social benefits.
Members shall endeavour to resolve difficulties which may arise between themselves and their clients expediently.
Where a member cannot resolve the matter with the client, the matter should be referred by the client to the Honorary Secretary of the IAFD. The Secretary will respond to the client within thirty days and will request the Redress and Mediation Committee to convene to investigate the matter, offer mediation and make appropriate recommendations.
In the event of the recommendations of the committee being unacceptable to the client, an independent arbiter shall be appointed with the agreement of the parties to offer resolution to the matter. The rights of the client and the member are in no way diminished by use of these procedures.
Members of IAFD shall provide full training for their staff in all aspects of funeral service and client management and shall constantly strive to improve the quality of service through educational programmes designed for that purpose.
Members shall display prominently the Association symbol and Code of Practice.
Contact the Irish Association of Funeral Directors:
Mespil Business Centre,
Telephone 0818 935 000
The Mount Business Centre,
2 Woodstock Link,
Belfast, BT6 8DD
Telephone 0800 912 1500