Attorney & Mediator
Attorney & Mediator

Funeral Planning – Our Rights

Funeral cortege

Funeral Planning – Our Rights

Since we now have the right to dictate our own final plans through a Designation of Funeral Representative, it is important to understand our rights and the availability of options.

Embalming.  There is no requirement that you be embalmed if you are going to be buried or cremated within 48 hours.  While many funeral homes and funeral directors will urge this practice, it is not mandatory.

Caskets.  There is no law which requires a casket.  If you wish to be cremated, you need not have an expensive wooden casket.  Most cremation services do require a container; however, this may be an inexpensive alternate container made of unfinished wood or cardboard.

If you wish to be buried, again, there is no requirement that you have a casket; however, the individual cemeteries are free to establish their own rules concerning interment.  I will discuss “green funerals” in a future post.

You do not have to purchase your casket from the funeral home that you use.  Federal law requires funeral homes to accept caskets that families have purchased from other sources such as on-line, or home made.

As you can see, there are choices available to us and to our families when it concerns our final plans.  You must educate yourself ahead of time and have these plans detailed and ready.