Co-op Funeral Directors
Chelmsford Star Co-operative Society


The purpose of this policy is to ensure that the operations of Coop Funeral Directors does not have a negative impact upon vulnerable customers.

What is a vulnerable customer?

A vulnerable customer is defined as someone who, due to their personal circumstances, is especially susceptible to detriment, particularly when a business is not acting with appropriate levels of care.

Vulnerable customers are customers whose ability or circumstances require us to take extra precautions in the way that we sell and provide our services to ensure that they are not disadvantaged in any way.

Identifying a vulnerable customer

Our staff are trained to identify vulnerable customers so that we can take extra steps to assist.

When engaging with customers over the phone it is often difficult to identify a vulnerable consumer because it is not possible to see many of the characteristics, such as body language and facial expressions, which may identify whether the prospective customer requires additional information and guidance to enable them to make an informed decision.

It is not always possible to recognise these characteristics. Therefore, if you believe that you may fit the criteria for a vulnerable customer, please read this policy and notify us immediately of your particular needs.

Vulnerability groups

We recognise that certain groups of customers may be vulnerable. Whilst not all customers in these groups may be vulnerable, we will consider a customer’s individual circumstances where a potential vulnerability is identified. These groups may include, but are not restricted to:

  • Personal circumstances of the customer – factors such as financial difficulties, bereavement, caring responsibilities or redundancy
  • A sudden diagnosis of serious illness to the customer or close family member
  • Customer with health issues – illness, whether physical or mental illness, severe or long term
  • Customers with communication difficulties (including learning difficulties and English not being their first language, dyslexia)
  • A customer with a reduction in physical or mental capacity
  • The customers age particularly older and younger

Our key principles when engaging with a vulnerable customer

As soon we think we may be engaging with a vulnerable customer, whether this is through our identification or you are approaching us, we will:

  • Immediately make a record of this and ensure we adhere to this policy
  • Provide additional opportunities for you to ask questions about the information we have provided
  • Continuously seek confirmation that you have understood the information that has been provided
  • Ask if there is anybody with you who is able to assist. If not, and we believe this will be beneficial, we will make arrangements to continue with the subject matter at another
  • Offer you the opportunity to complete the transaction after a period of further consideration.

If we can’t help a customer, we will try and make sure that they understand what alternative options are available to them.