December 7th, 2012
Embalming, in modern times, is the art and science of temporarily preserving a body to be suitable for public display at a funeral. Many choose this option to extend the time between the death and the funeral so that family and friends can gather together for the funeral. However, it is not required, (except in cases of transporting the body cross-state).
Here you can read reasons for and against embalming and decide for yourself what is best for you or a loved one when planning a funeral.
The Pros of Embalming
The three goals of embalming are as follows: preservation, presentation and sanitation.
- Embalming preserves the body.
The process of embalming increases the time between the death and burial to 2 weeks or more. Without embalming, the deceased must be buried or cremated within a few short days. Most deaths are sudden and the extra time can be very useful when family does not live close.
- A More Life-like Presentation
The goal of embalming is to make the body appear relaxed and natural as possible. The process adds color back to the body and fills out areas that may dehydrate otherwise. Seeing the deceased as close to life as possible often helps loved ones to say goodbye. Some funeral homes require embalming for open casket. However, state and federal law does not mandate embalming except in the cases of transportation across state lines.
Continue reading “What Are The Pros & Cons of Embalming?” »
June 7th, 2012
The Traditional Funeral Service Can Be Personalized for Each Family
Let’s face it, the average person has little to no clue about what goes on behind planning a funeral service. That’s why there are funeral home directors to guide individuals through the process. Even so, it’s a good idea to have a basic understanding of what you want and what you need before meeting with a funeral director. That’s why FSN Funeral Homes called Janie Singleton, co-owner and funeral director for Faith Funeral Service, to get some insight into recent changes in the funeral home industry and her opinion on the funeral home’s responsibility to educate the public.
Through her 12 years working in the industry, Singleton has found many myths exist around funeral planning which create potential problems. In a recent seminar hosted by Singleton, she discussed three major aspects affecting the funeral home industry which she feels the public should be more aware of: changing burial methods, pre-planning, and new legislation.
Changing Burial Trends Provide More Options
As she discussed the number of ways which a burial may be planned, Singleton stresses the opportunity this gives to those burying their loved ones. “Every service can be customized to fit each family,” Singleton explains, “and that’s what we try to do.” Here are a few burial options Singleton described:
September 10th, 2011
Here at FSN Funeral Homes, we strive to find the best advise for the questions so commonly asked about funeral planning and the details that come along with it. Here is a list of the most frequent questions and their answers. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask.
FAQ : Funeral Planning
What do I need to know about funeral planning?
There are a few basics you should always keep in mind when planning a funeral.
- Be informed and ask questions.
- Go over all options available at several funeral homes, making sure the funeral home you chose is suitable for your personal needs and budget.
- Request an itemized price list.
- Make the arrangements for a personalized service to honor your loved one.
Who do I need to contact first when pre-planning a funeral?
- When pre-planning a funeral you can call the funeral home directly and work with the funeral director there, or you can contact an Estate Planning attorney.
How much does an average funeral cost?
- The average funeral in today’s time is somewhere between $6,000 – $8,000. This estimated price includes, all services provided by the funeral home, casket/urn, burial and cemetery arrangements.
Continue reading “FAQs: Funeral Planning” »
September 7th, 2011
Funeral service providers are not all created the same and do not always offer the same services you might be expecting. When planning a funeral, you don’t always have a lot of time to make arrangements – so, learning the ins and outs of funeral planning ahead of time can help for when the time is necessary.
There are three categories of funeral providers to choose from.
- Full Service Providers
- Specialized Service Providers
- Limited Service Providers
Full-Service Funeral Providers
Full service providers offer the most options and services when it comes to funeral planning. They can fulfill any service request at any time. The services available are:
- Facilities for people to gather in for visitations and ceremonies.
- Vehicles such as a hearse and limousines for funeral processions.
- A large range of caskets, urns and other funeral service merchandise.
Keep in mind – that when using Full Service funeral home they often don’t offer simplified services with the same attention to detail as they would for a more elaborate full service ceremony.
Specialized Service Providers
Specialized service providers offer similar service options as the full service funeral homes do but on a more limited basis. The services are:
- Facilities for people to gather in for visitations. Typically they are smaller than the full-service providers buildings – and only have one or two rooms for services and ceremonies.
- Vehicles may or may not be provided, and hours of operation may be shorter.
- Small range of funeral merchandise, including caskets and urns. They are typically in a building similar to doctors office in appearance.
Limited Service Providers
Limited service providers usually arrange direct cremation and burials without ceremonies.
- The services they offer are usually limited when it comes to completion of documentation and transferring the deceased to the crematory or cemetery.
- Merchandise choice is very limited.
Make sure that the services and merchandise they offer are adequate for your situation. They are often very limited and precise when it comes to providing funeral services, however they are often the least expensive option.
Keep in mind…
- When ‘shopping’ for a funeral home provider, take care to go over all the details before signing any contracts. You can use the Funeral Home Comparison Checklist to help you when planning a funeral, by comparing prices and services offered at the funeral homes in your area.
Once you have chosen the funeral home to coordinate and provide your services, you will sit down with a funeral director to start planning and arranging the funeral. The whole situation is a bit intimidating if you are not sure of what to expect and how to express your concerns. By educating yourself about funeral and cemetery terminology as well as the means needed for pre-planning a funeral ahead of time, you will feel more comfortable when making the arrangements.
August 31st, 2011
Today, many families are not aware of their role in the funeral planning process. Once you have an idea of what you would like to take place at the service you are planning, you should sit down with a funeral director to go over the logistics.
Something you should know:
You are the one who determines the cost of the funeral services that will be held for you or your family members. The details of the services are guided and determined by your needs, and budget. But, not all funeral homes are created equal, they come in different sizes, styles and have different specialties. It is a wise idea to ‘shop’ around before deciding which funeral home to work with. Below is a checklist that will aid you in covering all the cost aspects associated with planning a funeral.
Funeral Home Comparison Checklist
Make copies of this checklist to compare the prices of services offered at funeral homes in your area.
Name of Funeral Home____________________________________________
Name of Crematory_______________________________________________
Name of Cemetery________________________________________________
Notes on Business Reputation_____________________________________
Continue reading “Funeral Home Comparison Checklist” »
June 30th, 2011
What is a Green Burial?
A green, natural or eco-burial is a burial that allows the body and the burial grounds to stay as natural as possible. No embalming, concrete vaults, or toxins are used. Bio-degradable caskets, shrouds or blankets are used instead of traditional caskets, urns or vaults.
What is the Importance of a Green Burial?
Green Burials cause minimal environmental impact. In nature everything is recycled, there is no waste. Green burials are both an earth friendly, and less expensive option.
Is Cremation Considered Green?
A green burial is often an alternative to cremation. Cremation, however is more environmentally friendly than traditional burials. Using a bio-degradable urn is a good option if you’re considering a green cremation.
Modern crematoriums have made significant reductions in emissions through out the years, making cremation a safe choice.
What are the Costs of a Green Funeral?
The average price for a green burial ranges from $1,000 – $4,000, which usually includes the burial plot, opening and closing of the grave, grave marker and maintenance fee.
Continue reading “Planning a Green Burial” »
June 15th, 2011
When a loved one dies, the family and friends of the deceased are left planning a funeral service in a time of grief and confusion. This article is here to help, and guide you through the steps needed during this difficult time.
Who To Notify After a Death:
Family Members - Spouse, parents, siblings, children, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends should be notified first. *tip* It might be easiest to appoint certain people to do the calling to help lessen the load.
Insurance Companies - auto, home and life insurance companies, as well as any others the deceased might be associated with.
Employers – If your loved one was working, you’ll need to call his or her employer immediately. You will also want to ask about:
- Deceased benefits and any pay due, including: vacation, sick time, disability income, etc.
- If you or other dependents are still eligible for benefit coverage through the company.
- Whether there is a life insurance policy through the employer, who the beneficiary is and how to file a claim.
Continue reading “What To Do When A Loved One Dies” »
June 13th, 2011
Estate lawyers, also known as probate lawyers or attorneys, are responsible for taking the personal representative/executor of a will through the estate planning process. Which means that they are trained to walk you through every step of your estate planning.
Estate Lawyers are equipped to offer legal and educational support helping you to organize and legalize your estate distribution.
Why hire and estate attorney?
If you have a complex estate or family situation that requires detailed planning, hiring an estate attorney to help you is a good idea. A good estate lawyer can build your estate plan, as well as minimize potential taxes and fees, and set up a contingency plan to make sure that your assets are distributed to the correct beneficiaries.
Examples of complex estates and complicated family situations
- Own your own business
- Your estate is worth more than 1 million dollars
- Have a special needs child
Continue reading “Estate Lawyers: What to Expect” »
May 18th, 2011
Planning a funeral during a time of grief can be a complicated and frustrating process. The family is left to make many decisions and arrangements for the services that will honor their loved one. Choosing a Funeral Home for the service to take place is the first step.
When choosing a Funeral Home there are several different factors to take into consideration, including:
- Funeral Costs
- Family and Religious Traditions
- Type of Funeral
Funeral Services are influenced by religious, cultural and family traditions along with costs and personal preferences. Every family has their own vision and expectation as to how to honor their loved one. These preferences will help to determine whether the funeral will be religious or secular, public or private, simple or elaborate, open or closed casket and whether the remains will be cremated or buried.
Funeral Directors can help make the process less complicated and more relaxing during this time of healing and closure.
What Does a Funeral Director Do?
- Provides transportation of the deceased to the funeral home from – the hospital, nursing home, hospice house, residence, etc
- Helps notify proper authorities, family and relatives
- Secures necessary permits and death certificates that your town or state requires
- Gathers information and preparing death certificate
- Prepares and submits obituary to local newspapers
- Works with Insurance agents, Social Security or Veteran’s Administrators
- Prepares the body for burial or cremation
- Assists the family with funeral arrangements and purchase of the casket/urn, sympathy flowers arrangements, burial vault and cemetery plot and other aspects of the funeral service
- Schedules the funeral service and the opening and closing of the grave with the cemetery personnel
- Coordinates all the details with clergy including readings and music
- Arranges police escort and transportation to the cemetery for the family prior to, during, and after the funeral
- Works with the family to create personal and creative elements in the ceremony to both honor and celebrate the your loved one’s life.
- Provides Grief assistance and counseling for the family
Continue reading “What to Expect From Your Funeral Director” »
October 28th, 2009
Funeral pre-planning or “pre-need” funeral planning gives you the ability to arrange your funeral in advance without the added burden of urgency during a time of great stress and grief. With funeral pre-planning, you will be able to make your wishes known to your family and relieve them from the burden of arranging your funeral service and burial.
There are three major elements involved in pre-planning a funeral: financing, the funeral service and the burial location. When pre-planning, you can focus on one element, all the elements, or parts of any of the elements.
Determining how to pay for your funeral is the most significant aspect of a funeral. Many families choose to pre-fund their funerals
Pre-funding is arranged by purchasing or instituting one of the following:
- Burial Insurance
- Final Life Insurance
- Pre-need Insurance
- Funeral Saving Accounts
- Life Insurance
- Trust Funds
Each of these options has its advantages and disadvantages. Before deciding which option suits your situation best, talk with a financial planner or funeral director to obtain all the facts including tax-liability and risk.
Pre-planning the funeral service involves deciding several of the funeral service details such as the following:
Continue reading “Funeral Pre-Planning” »