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TOPIC: Embalming

Embalming 10 Jul 2009 08:32 #259

Bear with me. This is my first time on the forum. I just recently purchased a mauseleum crypt in Utah for myself and my wife, and was told that it was a "requirement" that I be embalmed. I have been reading that embalming is normally not required except in one or two states(I don't think Utah is one of them ) and would rather avoid it if possible, maybe for environmental reasons. Is this a case of someone trying to sell me a service that I don't really need, or is this maybe because I will be in an above ground structure?

can anyone shed some light on this issue?
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Re:Embalming 10 Jul 2009 11:12 #260

You make the following statement - "... and was told that it was a "requirement" that I be embalmed."

I suggest that you ask the cemetery to state the basis for their embalming requirement.

Even in the absence of a state embalming requirements, funeral homes are free to require embalming of deceased prior to public viewing. Cemeteries are free to require caskets to be covered with a vault or liner for ground burial even in the absence of local or state requirements. So the embalming requirement for mausoleum crypt final disposition may be a cemetery requirement which is legal to the best of my knowledge.
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Re:Embalming 20 Aug 2009 09:22 #279

Was it the cemetery who told you that or a funeral home?

Seems odd but I suppose a cemetery could require whatever they like.

Contact the Utah FCA affiliate and see if they know:

Funeral Consumers Alliance of Utah
1823 S 250 E
Orem, UT 84058
801-226-2323 (Ask for Joyce.)
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
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Re:Embalming 03 Mar 2010 10:51 #312

As far as I know you're right about the embalming being required by the state, but as your first response that you received, they can make their own requirements as they see fit.
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Re:Embalming 15 Apr 2010 07:14 #328

  • northstar73
  • northstar73's Avatar
  • Licensed Embalmer and Funeral Director
You can always confirm questions like this on the FTC website, www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/business/adv/bus05.shtm To save time, here is the wording on embalming directly from the website:

2. Embalming

The second disclosure tells consumers that the law does not require embalming.(3) The statement should read as follows:

Except in certain special cases, embalming is not required by law. Embalming may be necessary, however, if you select certain funeral arrangements, such as a funeral with viewing. If you do not want embalming, you usually have the right to choose an arrangement that does not require you to pay for it, such as direct cremation or immediate burial.

You do not need to include the phrase, "except in certain special cases," indicated in bold-face above, if state or local law in the area where you do business does not require embalming under any circumstances. If you want to add information about state law requirements, you can do so after the FTC disclosure. You should place this disclosure in immediate conjunction with the price for embalming.

Note: "In immediate conjunction" means that the embalming disclosure must appear directly next to the price for embalming. You should not put the disclosure on a separate page or anywhere else on the GPL apart from the embalming price. (See also Sample 1 GPL at the end of this publication.)


NOTE: the above text was written to instruct funeral homes on how to present this disclosure on the GPL, so it is written to the funeral home, not the consumer, all a consumer needs to know is what the disclosure means.

In all cases, this disclosure should appear on the General Price List and if you are required to have embalming done, the reason must be disclosed to you on the statement of goods and services that you sign and receive a copy of before leaving a funeral establishment. Now as was pointed out earlier, embalming is often required by funeral homes for public viewing and by cemeteries for entombment in crypts, but that is a policy of the business, not a blanket regulation or law.

Along these lines, many are surprised to learn that outer burial containers, which some are referred to as "vaults" by the public are also not a legal requirement but actually a cemetery requirement as well. Again, another disclosure on the price list states that if any law, cemetery, or crematory requirements mandate the purchase of anything, it be disclosed to you on the statement before you sign for the purchase.

As you can see, your simple question can open up a much larger conversation on issues that were to be addressed by the FTC Funeral Rule linked at the beginning of my post. It is not the easiest reading material, but unlike legal briefs, is pretty straightforward. Of course, questions here will always be addressed as well.

In short, a funeral home or cemetery can require anything they wish, but they cannot misrepresent it as a legal or other requirement without disclosing exactly why it is required to you.

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Re:Embalming 07 Aug 2010 16:51 #355

  • tumbleweed
  • tumbleweed's Avatar
Any embalmers using a heart tap exclusive for drainage?
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