Municipalities – Potsdam – Municipalities pay tens of thousands of euros for social burials – Politics


Potsdam (dpa / bb) – Brandenburg counties and districts spend every year tens of thousands of euros for social burials. This was the result of a survey by the German Press Agency. In some regions, the costs have risen enormously, as in the district of Oberhavel. According to district spokeswoman Constanze Gatzke, almost 70,000 euros have been taken over funeral expenses this year. That's almost 30,000 euros more than in the whole of last year. A role played not only the slightly increased number of cases, but also cost increases and the increase in cemetery fees.

"According to our observations, the number of social burials in Brandenburg has increased," says Fabian Lenzen of the Bestatterinnung Berlin-Brandenburg. Compared to 2017, the number of applications for reimbursement last year increased by over 300 in Cottbus as well. In fact, according to city spokesman Jan Globmann at the 1245 only in 59 test cases, the costs have been incurred. All in all, the city spent almost € 94,000 on social burials in 2018.

A social burial comes into question when the deceased or the deceased had no money and funeral costs to the bereaved can not be expected.

In the state capital Potsdam, with 65 applications this year, the county Uckermark with 53 paid cases in the year 2018 and the district Teltow-Flaming with 69 subsidized cases this year are slightly declining or on a stable level.

"The cost of a funeral, which are taken over by the welfare provider Potsdam, depending on the individual case decision 1500 to 3000 euros," said Potsdam city spokeswoman Juliane Guldner. In Potsdam, relatives could freely choose the funeral home and the kind of burial. However, the religion and the last will of the deceased would have to be considered. "It is also important that in the case of a funeral, the costs of which are to be taken on application by the social assistance institution, only the reasonable, necessary and necessary costs are taken into account," said the spokeswoman.

However, there are, according to Fabian Lenzen, for example, in the selection of Grabart restrictions. "Here, then, sometimes a rather favorable job type is given," he says. According to Constanze Gatzke, in the district of Oberhavel there are also special grave sites for star children, in addition to the municipal cemeteries. There is also a Jewish cemetery, Catholic and Protestant cemeteries. "On request, a maritime burial, mountain burial or the Friedwald is possible," says the district spokeswoman.

However, the costs are not always covered immediately. "The processing periods and procedures in the social services are regionally quite different and thus also the waiting times for the applicant and as a result for the undertaker," says Fabian Lenzen. In some cases, they would have to wait up to nine months to decide whether or not to reimburse the costs, partly because the applicants had not yet submitted all the necessary documents.

"In the worst case, the application is then awarded after a long wait negative and the Undertaker has problems to receive any payment," says the Guild spokesman. Because then again the relatives are responsible for the costs.

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