Myth #1: All Funeral Homes Require Embalming
This is not true; however, it is a state issue. Although every state has its own individual laws governing burial procedures, it is true in most states that embalming is not legally required. However, even in states that do require embalming, it is never required within the first 24 hours of the passing. In instances when services are delayed, for whatever reason, refrigeration can be used to keep the body from further decomposing until arrangements have been determined. In this case and with the following issues, it’s important to discuss available options with your funeral home.
Myth #2: Funeral Homes Require Viewing Of The Body
Contrary to popular belief, viewing of the body is not necessary. In fact, it is completely up to the discretion of whoever is planning the services. What loved ones must keep in mind is that viewing of the body is not a mandatory way to say goodbye to the deceased. If the death came as a result of traumatic injuries or other unpleasant circumstances, then the family may prefer to remember the deceased as he or she was known in life. Seeing the mortal remains can be an important part of the grieving process for some people, but circumstances vary. Often, the immediate family can have a private viewing, and whether the casket is open later will be a separate decision.
Myth #3: Funeral Homes Require That Caskets and Flowers Be Purchased From Them Directly
Planners can purchase materials for services from whichever vendor they choose. This includes caskets and flowers. While funeral homes typically provide the casket for the deceased, most are willing to work with unusual requests. If the departed expressed a strong preference for a certain kind of casket that is not offered by the funeral home, then special arrangements can sometimes be made. Funeral homes will often have florists they can recommend, and floral arrangements may be offered as part of a package of services, but you can always choose to hire your own florist.
Myth #4: Funeral Homes Are Required To Stick To Pre-need Contracts
This is also false. The truth of the matter is that pre-need contracts are really a rough estimate of the services and their associated fees. What most people don’t know or realize is that sometimes there are additional fees that are incurred for extra services that are requested throughout the planning process. Examples include clergy honoraria, newspaper notices, flowers, crematory fees, and grave openings. Directors and staff will typically point out the existence of subsequent costs, particularly when they will exceed whatever was covered by a pre-need payment.