Frequently Asked Questions

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What needs to be done if a death has just occurred? See our FAQ page “What to Do After Someone Dies

What should I do if the death has occurred out of state? Your funeral director can assist you with out-of-state arrangements, either to transfer the remains to another state or from another state.

What is the purpose of a funeral? A funeral is the customary way to recognize death and its finality. Funerals are recognized rituals for the living to show respect for the dead and to help survivors begin the grief process.

I’ve decided on cremation. Can I still have a funeral or a viewing? Yes, quite often some sort of viewing precedes the actual cremation. We can assist you with the necessary information for a funeral with a cremation following, or for a memorial service.

What is the difference between a pre-planned funeral and a pre-paid funeral? Generally, funeral plans consist of a two step process: making the funeral arrangements (pre-need funeral contract) and second, funding the cost of the prearranged funeral through life insurance, bank trust agreement or other method. It is possible to select funeral goods and services without pre-funding the funeral or to pre-fund a funeral without selecting specific goods and services.

What is embalming? Embalming sanitizes andpreserves the body, retards the decomposition process, and enhances the appearance of a body disfigured by traumatic death or illness. Embalming makes it possible to lengthen the time between death and the final disposition, thus allowing family members time to arrange and participate in the type of service most comforting to them.

Is embalming required by law? No. Most states, however, require embalming when death was caused by a reportable contagious disease or when remains are to be transported from one state to another by common carrier or if final disposition is not to be made within a prescribed number of hours.

Will government agencies help defray final expenses? Often, outside funds are available to offset out-of-pocket costs. Funeral directors will often help gather the necessary information to apply for financial assistance from Social Security, Veterans’ Administration, retirement plans and any others.

See our detailed fact sheets for more information:

What is Prearrangement?

Getting Help for Your Grief

What to Do After Someone Dies

Planning for End-of-life Care Decisions