When a loved one passes away, arranging and covering the expenses of their funeral can be a significant concern. In South Africa, questions may arise regarding the use of a deceased person’s bank account to pay for these funeral costs. In this blog, brought to you by Doc Assist, we will explore whether it is permissible to use a deceased person’s bank account for their funeral expenses.

Accessing a Deceased Person’s Bank Account

After someone passes away, accessing their bank account becomes an important consideration. Generally, the deceased person’s bank account is frozen upon notification of their death. This measure is put in place to protect the estate and ensure that funds are appropriately managed.

Executor or Administrator’s Role

To access the funds in the deceased person’s bank account, the executor or administrator of the estate needs to follow the appropriate legal procedures. The executor or administrator is responsible for managing the deceased person’s estate, including paying outstanding debts and distributing assets according to the will or intestate succession laws.

Funeral Expenses and the Estate

Funeral expenses are typically considered priority debts and are often paid from the deceased person’s estate. The executor or administrator can use funds from the estate to cover the funeral costs, including paying the funeral home, purchasing a burial plot, and arranging other related services.

Temporary Provision for Funeral Expenses

In some cases, the bank may allow for a temporary provision to cover funeral expenses. This provision may involve granting limited access to a portion of the funds in the deceased person’s account specifically for funeral-related costs. However, the bank’s policies and procedures may vary, and it is essential to consult with the bank and provide the necessary documentation to access these funds.


When dealing with the financial aspects of a loved one’s passing, it’s crucial to have a clear understanding of the legal requirements and processes. After the passing of a loved one, a death certificate is essential to gain access to their bank account and manage their affairs. 


Doc Assist offers fast and reliable assistance in obtaining a death certificate or multiple copies thereof. With our expertise and efficient processes, we navigate the necessary procedures, saving you time and effort during this challenging period. Trust Doc Assist to handle the documentation while you focus on honoring the memory of your loved one.


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