The paperwork generated by the FH's death seems to be never-ending. It is still coming - and a lot of it is duplicated. Take yesterday - I filled in an R27 tax form at the end of July, and the department replied asking for more information about one aspect of his affairs, and I responded on 11th August. I keep photocopies of everything! Another R27 arrived on Saturday morning........so I had to phone up and find out if there was a problem.
Also in the post yesterday were three brown envelopes from the tax credit system. Two of them I could understand as they were winding up our joint claim, but the third one was relating to a joint claim for now, until next April and referring to sums of money I am not in receipt of. All very confusing - another phone call, and profuse apologies from a lady in Lancashire somewhere, explaining that my single claim is up and running and I could ignore this.
And then there is the new funding for our situation. I think I am entitled to a Widowed Parent's Allowance whilst I am getting Child Benefit for the YFG.....but it hasn't turned up yet. I phoned them on Friday to see what was happening, and was told that it had been turned into a "manual claim" and would have to be processed by hand somewhere, and so would be delayed somewhat. "But don't worry," the kindly sounding woman said, "you'll get it backdated to the bereavement date." I'm lucky that I am in the fortunate position of being able to manage until it does turn up, but I do feel for those for whom this lifeline is essential and they need it now. A lump sum in six weeks' time won't feed the children now, after all. I can see how easily people fall into debt when they have no cushion of savings to fall back on in these situations.
I have received a Bereavement Payment, which has paid a good chunk of the funeral expenses. We had prepared, as you know, for funeral expenses and for an emergency fund. The "average" funeral costs are supposed to be in the range of £4000 at the moment, so we were fortunate to come in well under that amount. I'm going to do a post about funerals in the future, as I feel that they are an area where we need to plan in advance, as we are so upset and distracted at the time that more money is sometimes spent than we realise.
I hope that our situation will be sorted out by the end of September and we can start to get to grips with our new regime, and I can sort out some work for myself one way or another. If I can't get a suitable job, I shall just have to ramp up my self-employment activities somehow.......
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