This guide to choosing a funeral provider will come in handy and help to ease the overwhelming stress following the death of loved one. We have done all the research for you and have included some excellent resources and tools to help get you through the process of making all the necessary arrangements. Suggestions and tips on how to budget and save money are included along with a discussion of your funeral rights as a consumer.
The federal government protects consumers in several ways when they are shopping for funeral services. The Federal Trade Commission’s FTC Funeral Rule passed in 1984 effectively monitors and governs the manner in which funeral homes and similar providers engage in business practices with the public. Features of the FTC Funeral Rule include:
Funeral homes must provide consumers with information about services and their costs over the telephone when requested.
Funeral homes must give a written statement that outlines available arrangements with prices to consumers that visit their business in person.
Consumers have the right to view a price list that details the costs of caskets before viewing them. This option is important as not all casket models may be on display, particularly the less expensive ones.
Funeral homes must inform consumers of potential legal requirements for services when using a cemetery or crematory.
We chose some of the top online resources and included them here to help you locate a funeral home in the Phoenix area. Dignity Memorial is one such resource that connects consumers to a nationwide network of providers within the United States and Canada. Their website links to more than 2,000 funeral homes and related services. Local service providers in the Phoenix area include Greenwood Memory Lawn Mortuary & Cemetery and Green Acres Glendale Mortuary.
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is another excellent resource that maintains an online directory of funeral service providers in Phoenix and surrounding towns. Many of the BBB listings include accredited businesses that have top A+ ratings. The Funeral Ethics Organization (FEO) provides resource listings for all 50 states including Arizona. The resources cover a variety of topics highlights of which include making funeral arrangements along with choosing caskets or cremation services.
Consumers have a variety of flexible options available to help them cover the costs associated with funeral arrangements. Choices include a having a life insurance policy that can be purchased years in advance for added peace of mind. Other ways to plan in advance include setting aside a rainy day fund in the form of a savings account or a trust fund.
Some funeral service providers offer prepayment plans that consumers may want to consider. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) discusses this option in detail on their “planning your own funeral” webpage. You must consider several factors with a prepayment plan. There is the possibility that the funeral home may close and go out of business. You should also check to see if the plan is transferable if you move to another state.
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