Funeral Assistance Houston: Find Harris County Charities To Help Your Family With Funeral Costs
Funeral assistance provides qualifying families who need help with both burial and cremation costs.
Many funeral expense assistance programs are offered by local county social service departments or sometimes local non-profit organizations.
In this guide, I will provide you with a listing of resources to help you find agencies that can help with everything from funeral costs, cremations, and even a Houston funeral planner who can provide burial consultations if you have questions.
Harris County Bereavement Services – Burial Assistance In Harris County
The Harris County Community Services Department offers a bereavement services program to individuals who die in Harris County.
This indigent burial services program is available to low-income families who fall under certain income guidelines. The eligibility for burial assistance is based on the chart below:
|Number of Family Members||HUD 80% Median Income Level||HUD 30% Median Income Level|
Editor’s note: In addition to emergency funeral assistance, Harris County also helps with services like rent/utility payments, and case management .
The documents you will need to apply for help with funeral costs are:
- Social Security card
- Citizenship status
- House deed, lease agreement, housing contract,
- Proof of income
- Bank statement
To learn more about this option for burial assistance in Houston, contact 713.696.7900 or visit the Harris County Community Services website.
3A Bereavement – Houston Funeral Assistance
3A Bereavement is a 3rd Ward TX nonprofit that provides funeral expense help to low-income families in Houston.
To receive help paying for cremation or a funeral you must meet the following criteria:
- The deceased lived in Harris County or Fort Bend County
- Show proof of financial status via documentation
- The deceased had no life or burial insurance to pay for a funeral
Despite meeting the eligibility requirements above, assistance is not guaranteed. Funeral assistance is provided if funding is available.
Additional Funeral Assistance Services Offered
3A Bereavement can also help with these burial related services as well:
- Funeral Consultations – This includes providing a list of funeral homes, help understanding funeral costs, going with you to meet a funeral director, following up with your family 12 months after the funeral.
- Grief Counseling – Up to 1 year of grief counseling is offered to family members. This includes children, siblings, spouses, and parents).
- Aftercare Service – Aftercare Services are available where families will receive phone calls to check-in with you, help you try to recover, and show you that you are not forgotten.
- Crime Victims Assistance – 3A Bereavement can help you to understand benefits a family may be entitled to under Crime Victims Compensation. The families of homicide victims can receive special funding and this is something 3A can help you understand.
- Workshops – These are offered to the public to help understand the funeral planning process. You can contact 3A at 713.649.3232 to learn more about upcoming workshops.
For more information regarding help paying for a funeral, you can call 713.649.3232, visit their office in 3rd Ward at 5330 Griggs Rd, Suite A108, Houston, TX 77021, or visit the 3A Bereavement website.
FEMA Funeral Reimbursement: Up To $9000 Toward A COVID 19 Related Death
Another way to find help with the cost of a funeral is through the FEMA COVID 19 funeral assistance program.
This is a federal funeral assistance program that will reimburse families up to $9000 for funeral or cremation expenses they had to pay after losing a family member to COVID 19.
To learn more, you can visit the COVID 19 Funeral Assistance website or call FEMA at 844.686.6333.
Funeral Consumers Alliance of Houston (Funeral Consultations In Houston)
This nonprofit does not provide help paying for funerals although they can provide you with options on burial arrangements to fit your budget.
For any funeral arrangement questions, you can call them at 713.526.4267, look them up on Facebook, or visit their office at 1504 Wirt Road, Houston, TX 77055.
Secure Your Legacy (Cemetery Broker Houston)
Another great source for funeral planning is Secure Your Legacy.
The owner is Stephanie Salcedo who is an industry leader here in Houston and she can answer any of your questions regarding the following topics:
- Funeral Plans – Helping you navigate funeral insurance payments to receive funds fast, funeral arrangement questions, funeral planning
- Cemetery Plots – Provide guidance on funding cemetery plots to fit your budget, help with paperwork, and tour the cemetery
- Other Areas of Expertise – Cremation services in Houston, headstones, funeral insurance, assistance finding budget-friendly cemetery plots in Houston,
- Veteran Burial Benefits – They can also help with understanding veteran burial benefits that are available via the Houston National Cemetery which is located in north Houston.
For additional questions on funeral planning or Houston cemetery plot or casket costs, call 832.953.4229, visit the Secure Your Legacy website, or visit their Sugar Land office at 3 Sugar Creek Center Blvd Suite 100, Sugar Land, TX 77478.
Crime Victims Compensation To Pay For Funeral Costs
If you lost a family member due to a violent crime you can visit the Texas Attorney General’s website to see if you qualify for burial assistance.
The Crime Victims Compensation Program can cover costs like:
- The funeral (limited to $6,500)
- Burial services
- Grave markers
- Transporting the deceased over 50 miles
- Loss of earnings which includes up to $700 per week for time missed at work due to physical or mental impairments that prevent you from working
You can visit the Texas Attorney General’s website to see a complete list of documents needed from the family and funeral home to potentially receive help with funeral services. You can also call them at 800.983.9933.
City of Houston Police Department – Victim Services Division
The Houston Police Department can also help you to better understand the assistance that is available to you or a family member who is the victim of a violent crime.
This division can help you to apply for Crime Victims Compensation and connect you to local social services agencies to help you.
Houston Police Stations
You can find help regarding Victim Services at any of these Houston police stations below.
For more information call Victim Services at 713.308.0080, visit them online, or the police headquarters at 1200 Travis Street, Houston, TX 77002.
COVID-19 Lost Loved One Fund (Memorial Area Ministries)
The COVID-19 Lost Loved One Fund will provide $3,500 of financial assistance to the household who passed away due to COVID-19. This amount is awarded per death.
This money is meant to help pay for things like an emergency funeral, rent, utility bills, or any other need.
Eligibility For Financial Assistance Due To A COVID-19 Death
- The individual passed away due to COVID-19 after March 1st
- They lived in your household
- Must reside in Harris, Fort Bend, Montgomery, Waller County
- Fall below the income guidelines below
|Household Size||Monthly Income||Annual Income|
- Documentation proving the COVID-19 death is needed. This can include a death certificate, funeral home paperwork, or a letter from a physician.
- ID for the deceased and beneficiary.
- Proof of residency in Harris, Fort Bend, Montgomery, or Waller County for both the deceased and beneficiary. Examples are government IDs, utility bills, leases, paycheck stub, etc
- Proof of income can include W2s, SSI, SSDI, unemployment, SNAP, paycheck stubs,
How To Apply For The COVID-19 Lost Loved One Fund
To apply for financial assistance you must complete an online application. These are offered in both English and Spanish.
For assistance completing the Lost Loved One Fund application, you can contact 713.468.4516 extension 149 or email help@MAMHouston.org.
How To Apply For The Social Security Death Benefit
If your spouse or parent passes away, you could receive a one-time payment of $255.
The benefit is typically paid to the surviving spouse, however, a child of the deceased can potentially receive it if there is no surviving spouse.
To apply for the Social Security death benefit you will need to contact the Social Security Administration at 800.772.1213. Also, you can learn more about this $255 death benefit by visiting the Social Security website.
Houston Mental Health Resources
Below are mental health resources in Houston for help with anxiety, depression, grief, or anything else you may be experiencing.
- Bo’s Place – Bo’s Place offers grief support to assist you if you have recently experienced the loss of a loved one. They offer a number of different ways to cope and also remember your family member or friend. They are at 10050 Buffalo Speedway Houston, TX 77054. This is across the 610 freeway from NRG Stadium. You can call them at 713.942.8339 or visit the Bo’s Place website.
- Harris Center Crisis Line – This line is available 24 hours a day for individuals who are experiencing depression, anxiety, fear, or even suicidal thoughts. The line is staffed with Counselors who are trained to help individuals who may be in a crisis or simply feel lost and need to speak to someone about their thoughts. They can also refer you to mental health resources if you are interested. You can call the Crisis Line at 713.970.7000. FYI you do not have to share your name if you don’t feel comfortable.
- Memorial Hermann Grief and Bereavement Resources – Memorial Hermann has compiled an extensive list of resources for anyone experiencing a loss of a family member or friend.
State Help With Funeral Costs (Texas Counties That Provide Burial Assistance)
If you live outside of Houston, you can still find help paying for the cost of a funeral. The best places to look are at county courthouses. Call any of these Texas county courthouses below and ask about the local “indigent burial assistance program”.
- Austin County – One E Main Street, Bellville, TX 77418 – 979.865.5911
- Chambers County – 404 Washington Ave, Anahuac, TX 77514 – 409.267.2400
- Colorado County – 400 Spring St, Columbus, TX 78934 – 979.732.2604
- Fort Bend County – 4520 Reading Rd, Suite A-900, Rosenberg, TX 77471 – 281.238.3502
- Galveston County – 5115 Highway 3, Dickinson, TX 77539 – 409.770.5585
- Liberty County – 1923 Sam Houston St, Liberty, Tx 77575 – 936.336.4558
- Matagorda County – 1700 7th St, Room 301, Bay City, TX 77414 – 979.244.7635
- Montgomery County – 501 N. Thompson St, Suite 401, Conroe, TX 77301 – 936.756.0571
- Waller County – 1420 Farr St, Waller, TX 77484 – 979.826.7700
- Wharton County – 515 E. Boling Highway, Wharton, TX 77488 – 979.532.3410
Funeral planning can be stressful and often sudden, therefore if this is your current situation I am sorry for your loss and pray that you and your family find the strength to get through this difficult time.
If you need help with funeral assistance in Houston, your primary options are 3A Bereavement and Harris County Social Services because these are the best two options to help you with the cost of a funeral.
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- FEMA Funeral Reimbursement: Receive Up To $9000 Toward A COVID 19 Related Death
Nick Bryant is the author of Understanding Healthcare Is Half The Battle and a Senior Counselor with 13+ years of experience working in community health and mental health. He enjoys spending time with his family, watching WWE on Friday nights, and working toward a Google Data Analytics certification. If you have additional questions about community resources or government assistance programs, simply leave a comment below and he will follow up as soon as possible.