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Funerals, memorial services and wakes

Resources and guidance on how to develop a COVID-19 Safety Plan for a funeral, memorial service or wake.

Be COVID Safe. Stay in business.

Electronic check-in is mandatory from Monday 23 November 2020

From Monday 23 November 2020, patron check-in at crematoria, funerals, funeral homes, memorial services, gatherings after funerals and memorial services must be completed using electronic methods such as a QR code.

The Service NSW COVID Safe Check-in is strongly recommended as a free, secure and convenient system, but any electronic method that meets the record keeping requirements can be used.

NSW Health advice regarding singing and chanting

Group singing and chanting remains a high-risk activity for transmission of COVID-19 should someone involved be infected. To help mitigate this risk, NSW Health has provided advice regarding singing and chanting in indoor and outdoor settings.

See NSW Health advice regarding singing and chanting.

Who must complete the COVID-19 Safety Plan

The responsible person for a funeral, memorial service or wake must develop and comply with a COVID-19 Safety Plan that addresses the matters in the checklist.

The responsible person is generally the occupier of the premises in which the funeral, memorial service or wake is held. However, if the funeral, memorial service or wake is held in a public park, a reserve or public garden, the responsible person is the person organising the funeral, memorial service or wake or the person conducting the service.

How many people are allowed

Full details are provided in the physical distancing section of the COVID-19 Safety Plan.


Funerals, memorial services or wakes Maximum capacity summary

300 attendees, or one attendee per 4 square metres, whichever is the lesser, may attend a funeral, memorial service or wake.

Funerals and memorial services at small hospitality venues (less than 200 square metres in size) can have one attendee per 2 square metres of space, up to a maximum of 100 attendees.

Small venues can have up to 50 attendees without the 4 square metre rule provided non-household contacts can maintain 1.5 metres of physical distance, whichever is the lesser.

Children count towards the capacity limit.


If seating people at tables there should be no more than 30 people per table.


COVID-19 Safety Plans are mandatory

Having a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place will help minimise risk of transmission of COVID-19 on your premises.

Complete the plan in consultation with your staff then share it with them.

For funeral homes and crematoria it is also mandatory to register as COVID Safe.

Keep your plan up to date

You may need to update the plan in the future, as restrictions and advice changes.

You will need to have an up to date plan at your premises at all times and be able to show it to an authorised officer if requested.

Your COVID-19 Safety Plan

You can either:

  • use the provided COVID-19 Safety Plan to address the checklist of matters for funerals, memorial services and wakes
  • keep using your existing plan, if you have one, after making sure it includes all the items in the provided COVID-19 Safety Plan.

Complete a COVID-19 Safety Plan


Things to note:

Register as a COVID Safe business 

If you've completed your COVID-19 Safety Plan, you can register your business as COVID Safe.

Register as a COVID Safe business

Last updated: 1 December 2020

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