News and Blogs

Washington - Disposition Agent 2010

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1/14/2010— Washington is considering SB 6394, which would give citizens the right to appoint a legal agent to carry out their funeral wishes. For status updates, go the legislature's site and click on "bill information."
 

Monument Company Details Consumer Abuse, Urges Passage of Funeral Rule Reform

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1/10/2010—Cemetery consumers have complained to us for years about the strong-arm tactics they face at the graveyard. Today, we got a letter from Tom Gast, of Gast Monuments in Chicago, confirming once again the need to bring cemeteries under the Federal Trade Commission's Funeral Rule. Gast's letter is addressed to Congressman Bobby Rush, and it urges Rush push for passage of his bill, HR3655, The Bereaved Consumer's Protection Act of 2009.

A few highlights from Gast's letter:

  • "The rules and regulations at many cemeteries have become so complex that a consumer could not possibly be expected to know what questions to ask in order to make an informed decision and cemetery personnel are not always forthcoming with all relevant information."
Last Updated ( Friday, 15 January 2010 13:24 ) Read more...
 

1 out of 4 Mass. Funeral Homes Violating FTC Funeral Rule

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11/25/2009 — The Massachusetts Division of Public Licensure has found 25 percent of funeral homes they inspected were illegally hiding prices from consumers. Click here for the report, and the names of the accused funeral homes (and hats off to the state for such diligent work, and for making the information public).

Last Updated ( Friday, 15 January 2010 13:25 ) Read more...
 

New Jersey Beefs up Cemetery Trusting - 2009

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11/23/2009 — Kudos to the New Jersey State Funeral Directors Association for their work tightening protections consumers enjoy when prepaying for cemetery services. They succesfully pushed for a bill that would require cemeteries to deposit 100 percent of any money a consumer spends on cemetery services, such as opening/closing the grave, or the crematory fee. Consumers may also transfer that money to a new cemetery if they change their minds or move. NOTE - if you prepay for a grave or niche, the cemetery does not have to refund your money if you change your mind.
From a press release by NJSFDA:

Last Updated ( Monday, 23 November 2009 15:30 ) Read more...
 

Mausoleum Sued for Propping Open Caskets

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Mausoleums are marketed as a "clean and dry" alternative to burial. In reality, gases and fluids can build up (especially in so-called "sealer" caskets), leading sometimes to  leaks or even explosions that breach the crypt. Understandably, mausoleum owners would prefer caskets be vented so the remains dehydrate. Families-whose fears are exploited and stoked by businesses that sell them a bill of goods about "clean and dry" burial products - want their dead "safely" sealed up.

Read more...
 


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