The NAFD has welcomed news that the Competition and Markets Authority intends to hold a full market investigation into the effectiveness of competition in the funerals sector.

You can read the information they have published today (28 March) by clicking here.

The NAFD has backed this proposal from the outset, having raised concerns that the initial six month market study only enabled the CMA to scratch the surface of the sector, leading it to overlook important evidence and drawing conclusions that were neither accurate nor reflective of the funerals sector as a whole.

However, we are disappointed that the sale and marketing of funeral plans has been omitted from the scope of the investigation, despite ample evidence as to how much this affects the experience of bereaved people. We are concerned that this will create a regulatory blind spot and will significantly restrict the CMA’s ability to gain a full understanding of the funeral services market and consumer risks within it.

Nevertheless, the market investigation represents an important opportunity to identify best practice, create a consistent minimum set of industry standards, support healthy competition and improve the way funeral directors communicate the range and value of their services.

We also hope the investigation will bring us closer to identifying the right kind of regulatory structure and a suitable social support mechanism to protect the full range of funeral service consumers going forward. The NAFD looks forward to working in support of the CMA and playing our part in ensuring it is a rigorous, comprehensive and fairly-conducted process.