- Cancer Information
- Advanced cancer
- Living with advanced cancer
- Looking ahead
- Making a funeral plan
Making a funeral plan
Having advanced cancer can mean thinking about things you might not have thought about otherwise – like making a will or even how you would want your life to be celebrated. Some people may want to think about what they want for their funeral, while others may not.
If you want to plan your funeral, you could discuss your wishes with your family and friends, lodge a plan with the funeral director of your choice or record your wishes in your will. The executor is the name for the person you appoint to carry out the wishes left in your will. They should follow the directions in your will, but they are not legally bound to do so.
You can personalise your funeral to suit your cultural or spiritual beliefs. You may have just a few simple requests for music you want played or poems you’d like read, or you may have lots of ideas for the full service. You can also choose not to have a funeral at all or to have a non-traditional event such as a celebration of life. If you change your mind, you can alter these arrangements at any time.
It’s important to let your family know of any arrangements like this that you have made. Copies of a prepaid funeral contract should be given to members of your family or filed with your will.
Podcast for people living with advanced cancer
Dr Lucy Gately, Medical Oncologist, Alfred Health and Walter and Eliza Institute for Medical Research, VIC; Dr Katherine Allsopp, Supportive and Palliative Care Specialist, Westmead Hospital, NSW; A/Prof Megan Best, The University of Notre Dame Australia and The University of Sydney, NSW; Dr Keiron Bradley, Palliative Care Consultant, Medical Director Palliative Care Program, Bethesda Health Care, WA; Craig Brewer, Consumer; Emeritus Professor Phyllis Butow, Psychologist, The University of Sydney and Chris O’Brien Lifehouse, NSW; Louise Durham, Palliative Care Nurse Practitioner Outpatients, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Metro South Palliative Care, QLD; Dr Roya Merie, Radiation Oncologist, ICON Cancer Centre, Concord, NSW; Penny Neller, Project Coordinator, National Palliative Care Projects, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, Queensland University of Technology, QLD; Caitriona Nienaber, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council WA; Xanthe Sansome, Program Director, Advance Care Planning Australia, VIC; Sparke Helmore Lawyers; Peter Spolc, Consumer.
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