News and Blogs

Funeral Trust Checks and Balances: Who has your back?

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Death Care Law Blog
November 2, 2012

In the days that followed the Wisconsin Funeral Directors Association being placed into receivership some of the WFDA’s sister associations were quick to point out they had ‘checks and balances’ that would protect consumers’ funds from the problems that tripped up the Wisconsin Funeral Trust. As we reported in our last post a crucial ‘check and balance’ missing from the WFT was investment oversight. The fact that a trust has a corporate trustee does not necessarily mean that fiduciary has responsibility for monitoring the prudence of the investments. Corporate fiduciaries often look to uniform trust codes for the authority to delegate investment responsibilities. If a grantor wishes to use an outside asset manager general trust laws will accommodate those wishes. The problem with preneed trusts (and cemetery endowment funds) is that there is more than one “grantor” to the preneed trust.

Read the full article at Death Care Law Blog


When dying should not be an emergency

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OK to Die Blog
31 October 2012

If you are 15 years old and you are walking to school and are hit by a car and you are dying, this is an emergency.

If you are 85 years old and you are out doing your morning walk and are hit by a car and are dying, this is an emergency.

An unexpected dying at any age is an emergency.

In contrast, there are many people dying of advanced chronic and terminal illnesses whose dying should really NOT be an emergency. Yet these poor people come to the Emergency Department for help because they do not know two very important things:

Read the full article at OK to Die Blog


Will Student Loan Debt Haunt Your Family After Your Death?

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SevenPonds Blog
October 31, 2012

“Our daughter died — her student loans didn’t.”

Throughout our work and research at SevenPonds, we stumble upon a number of issues surrounding the end-of-life that many people probably don’t think about day to day. After nearly two years with this team, I continue to be surprised by the things I learn, from the people I talk to and the information I find. This, once again, was the case a few weeks ago when an email landed in my inbox with the subject line, “Our daughter died — her student loans didn’t.”

Read the full article at SevenPonds Blog


Friday Funeral Film: Harold and Maude

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The Family Plot Blog
November 2, 2012

By Gail Rubin, The Doyenne of Death™

Whenever I mention funeral films, invariably those of the baby boomer generation cite Harold and Maude, a cult classic comedy film from 1971. Ironically, while this movie is remembered for the main characters attending the funerals of people they don’t know (like me with my 30 Funerals in 30 Days Challenge), there are only two funerals depicted during the film. The message of living life to the fullest made Harold and Maude the outstanding story that it is.

Read the full article and see movie video trailer (2:12) at The Family Plot Blog


Dia de los BLOGtos

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Order of the Good Death Blog
November 2, 2012

Dia de los Muertos (or Day of the Dead, for us gringos) is the best holiday of the year.  It has all the food and presents and dressing up that make big American corporate holidays fun– or awful, depending on your point of view– but it’s also the day where the dead are invited to come back and visit the living.

Read the full article at Order of the Good Death Blog


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