QLD Unpaid Veterans Funeral Bill - Debt Collection Threat

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12 August 2014
My father recently died and he was my last family member. He was a veteran and the RSL gave me 2000.00 for his funeral and referred me to Michael Hutchinson Funerals. They did my father's funeral and now want 3200.00. I was never given an invoice for my dad's funeral. They new I was unemployed and I wasnt consulted on anything. They sent me the bill the day before my father's funeral. I have emails from them. I said that "you guys were going to look after my father because he was a veteran". They even told me they have cheaper funerals than what they charged me. I feel I've been taken for a ride. I said I can't pay it. They threatened to send it to debt collectors. I said I'm going to seek legal advice and I havent heard back from them even though I've called; nothing. My father died 4 months ago and I still don't have his remains. What can I do?

Sarah J

Well-Known Member
16 July 2014
Melbourne, Victoria
Hi Michael,

Is your complaint against the RSL for referring you to a funeral service that ended up more expensive than the $2000 they gave you for the service?

- Did the RSL organise the funeral service (ie. handle all correspondences between Michael Hutchinson Funerals and themselves) or where you kept in the loop and play a part in the decision -making process?
- Did your father have an agreement with RSL in which they would organise his funeral service? It would be best to look at what the agreement with RSL (or RSL membership policy) says about deceased members and financial support.
- Did you enter into any written agreement with RSL or Michael Hutchinson Funerals?
- Is the $3,200 the excess amount (ie. costs $5,200) or the full costs of the service?

Are you also complaining about getting your father's remains back? Who currently has your father's remains and what is the reason for not giving them to you?