News and Blogs

Federal court rules in favor of monks, sends casket case to Louisiana Supreme Court

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The Times-Picayune (
New Orleans LA
Published October 23, 2012
Updated October 24, 2012

"We insist that Louisiana's rules not be irrational."

In a sometimes harshly worded ruling, a panel of federal appellate judges Tuesday evening smacked down the Louisiana funeral board's continued attempts to prevent the St. Joseph Abbey monks from selling their hand-crafted caskets. "The great deference due state economic regulation (does not require) courts to accept nonsensical explanations for naked transfers of wealth," wrote Judges Patrick Higginbotham, Catharina Haynes and Stephen A. Higginson of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans. "We insist that Louisiana's rules not be irrational."

Read the full article at The Times-Picayune (

Last Updated ( Thursday, 25 October 2012 05:24 )

Practicing Irrational Medicine at the End of Life

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OK to Die Blog
Monday, 13 August 2012

We have got to start practicing conscious, rational and caring medicine at the end of life. We doctors must ask ourselves, “What medications really matter for this patient?” We must be having conversations that the patients and families can actually understand. We must be talking about how the “high tech” pathway at the end of life may actually create or prolong unnecessary suffering. We must instead focus on communicating that the “high touch,” comfort-focused pathway is most likely to give final peace to all parties- patients and families alike. Becoming less like cows, and awakening ourselves to these changes in practice pathways will not only rescue our patients and families from needless medical interventions and suffering at the end of life, it might just help save the life of the Medicare and Medicaid systems as well.... and that's something to "Moo" about.

Read the full article at OK to Die Blog

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 24 October 2012 08:22 )

Preneed Trusts : A Call to Mark to Market

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Death Care Law Blog
October 20, 2012

Advice to National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA)

We need to augment the advice offered the NFDA in 2009: eliminate from your trust evaluation guidelines any suggestions that a guaranteed rate of return is permissible. The days of set rates of return or book/tax cost of account for distributions are over.

Read the full article at Death Care Law Blog


WISCONSIN : Funeral Trust was underwater for years, records show

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Journal Sentinel
Milwaukee WI
Oct. 20, 2012

Aggressive investment strategies backfired for people's prepaid funds

Investments managed by the Wisconsin Funeral Trust - marketed to consumers as a safe place to invest cash earmarked to cover their funeral expenses - have had a shortfall of millions of dollars every year since 2008, one year after the fund's investment advisers called for putting money into the stock market and other riskier investments, records obtained by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel show.

Read the full article at the Journal Sentinel


Billboards, cemeteries and an angry Lauren.

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Little Miss Funeral
October 20, 2012

I have a bone to pick.

You see, I was driving home the other day on the thruway and do you know what I passed? A billboard. I know, whatever, right? I mean, I feel like everywhere I go I see new billboards. Well, this one really got under my skin. And it really shouldn’t have. You see, the message was great, however I wanted to jump out of my car and yell “FALSE ADVERTISING!”

It was a billboard for cemeteries. It had a nice smiling couple on it and it said just a few small words; Have you PrePlanned?

Read the full article at Little Miss Funeral


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