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4 Common Misconceptions About Funerals

4 Common Misconceptions About Funerals

In the evolving landscape of funeral arrangements, it's crucial not to fall into the trap of traditional choices when other options might better suit your or your loved one's preferences. Many of the costs associated with traditional funerals can be challenging to navigate, especially when grieving. The funeral industry has often been criticized for a lack of transparency, leaving individuals vulnerable to misleading sales tactics.

Misconception 1: You Must Buy Everything from Your Funeral Home

One of the most significant misconceptions is that you must purchase all funeral services and products directly from the funeral home. A study by the Consumer Federation of America found 20 percent of 142 funeral homes surveyed failed to list prices and options for consumers who buy an outside casket or container despite standards outlined in the Federal Trade Commission'sFuneral Rule. However, the Federal Trade Commission's Funeral Rule protects your right to "buy only the funeral arrangements you want." You can't be forced into buying an entire package if you don't require all the services included in it.

While not all funeral homes must post their price lists online (California being the exception), voluntarily posting prices online can be a positive sign for consumers. It demonstrates transparency and helps you make informed decisions. If a funeral home doesn't provide pricing information online, you can request a price list by email. A reputable funeral home will readily provide this information, helping you understand the costs involved. Even if you have a list of prices, always ask for specifics. In a recent survey of 142 funeral homes, for example, 22% of advertised prices for "simple cremations" did not include the cremation cost itself.

Misconception 2: Limited Casket and Urn Choices

The Funeral Rule grants you the freedom to choose caskets and urns from anywhere you prefer. Funeral providers cannot refuse to handle caskets or urns purchased elsewhere. This means you can shop for these items online or at different stores, potentially saving money compared to what a funeral home might charge. Overnight Caskets offers a much wider selection of caskets and burial vaults than your local funeral home at wholesale prices. We also offer several payment options including easy payment through our partnership with AFIRM. 

Misconception 3: Mandatory Embalming

Contrary to popular belief, there's no state law mandating embalming for every death. In cases where embalming is unnecessary, such as direct cremation, you can skip the procedure and save an average of $695, according to the National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA). It's essential to be aware of your rights regarding embalming and make informed decisions based on your specific circumstances.

Misconception 4: Immediate Funeral Requirements

Funerals don't always have to be held immediately. Modern processes allow families to take additional time when planning a funeral. Funeral homes can store a body for several days to a few weeks as long as the remains are appropriately refrigerated. Some states or jurisdictions may impose legal limits on how long a body can be held, but embalming can extend that duration. This flexibility in timing can be essential, especially during unexpected or challenging circumstances.

Extreme weather conditions, such as frozen ground in northern regions and heavy rainfall in hurricane-prone areas, can impact burial plans. Delaying a funeral may become necessary to ensure practical and respectful interment when ground conditions are more suitable.

The holiday season can also influence the decision to delay a funeral. Holding a funeral during this period may inadvertently associate a loved one's passing with the holidays, making it emotionally challenging for family and friends. Delaying the funeral until after the holiday season can separate the grieving process from festive celebrations, allowing for a more focused and meaningful remembrance.

In recent years, there has been a growing trend of celebrating the life of a loved one rather than adhering strictly to traditional funeral rituals. Life celebrations offer a more positive and personalized way to honor the person who has passed away. This approach allows friends and family to focus on the positive aspects of the individual's life and create a more inclusive and meaningful event.

Another trend in funerals is pre-planning. Overnight Caskets make it easy to make your own arrangements. It reduces emotional and financial stress on survivors, locks in a low price, and, most importantly, empowers you to have your wishes followed. Overnight Caskets is committed to delivering our customers an unparalleled standard of quality, care, and customer service. Our user-friendly ordering service and guaranteed delivery times provide peace of mind to families in trying times. Our dedicated customer service staff is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to assist you with any questions. We understand the severity of the matter and treat every order with the utmost importance.

Learn more about Overnight Caskets Pre-Planning services.