Financing the Cost of Death

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Abstract

In much of the developing world funeral expenditures can take up a large proportion of or even exceed a household’s monthly income. One way of obtaining funeral insurance in Thailand is by joining a cremation welfare association. This provides an example of how to deal with the burden of the funeral, which could be also adopted in other parts of the world. Our study aims to estimate the cost of death and discuss the roles of cremation welfare associations in Thailand. The data from the Thai National Statistical Office were used to identify the factors related to the financial support provided by cremation welfare associations. Our results show that public awareness of these associations and policy directions significantly influenced the amount of the financial support. Therefore, increasing the public awareness of cremation welfare associations is suggested as a useful strategy to further boost the percentage of people protected by funeral associations against insecurities caused by death.