There are a variety of resources available to funeral planners. Make sure to utilize these when making funeral plans.
Take advantage of these resources when planning a loved one’s funeral:
Are you in charge of planning your loved one’s funeral service? While this is not a simple task, you can get guidance from a number of individuals in addition to your family members and friends.
- If your loved one opted for hospice care, hospice caregivers may be a great resource for end of life planning and grief counseling. Many hospice programs offer funeral counseling and assistance with all stages of funeral planning.
- If you or your loved one has a relationship with a specific religious institution, you may consider asking the clergy for support and advice with respect to traditions. Additionally, religious institutions often provide support to those that cannot afford the cost of a funeral service.
- Funeral directors are also a great resource. If you’re not sure which funeral home to choose for your loved one’s service, use eFuneral’s free search tool to obtain information on the funeral homes in your neighborhood. With eFuneral, you can compare funeral homes by price, ratings, reviews, location, and more. Once you have selected the funeral home that best meets your needs, you can work with that specific funeral director to ensure the burial and/or cremation arrangements are set so that your loved one receives the care they deserve.
- When planning a funeral service for a veteran or member of the armed of the armed forces, contact the Department of Veterans Affairs. They will pay or reimburse some funeral expenses such as transportation to and from the funeral home.
- Social security provides a lump-sum death benefit of only $255 to eligible funeral planners – make sure to contact the office for assistance.
- Finally, your local city hall can be a wonderful resource. For instance, with one call to the City of Cleveland (216-348-7210), I was able to access information on indigent funeral services. Other Cleveland-area funeral and burial assistance programs may be found here.
When the time comes to make funeral service arrangements, don’t hesitate to lean on others for help with some of the planning. You might feel that the responsibility is yours — but taking on all of the planning could cause you undue stress. Don’t be afraid to ask for (or receive) help.
The Federal Trade Commission also offers a helpful consumer guide for arranging a funeral service that includes information on your legal rights as a funeral planner. And our resource center includes more articles and videos relating to the average cost of a funeral service, saving money on a burial or cremation funeral service, and funeral planning - check them out at eFuneral.com.
Leah Yomtovian Roush is the Senior Manager of Strategic Development for Cleveland, Ohio-based eFuneral, a comprehensive and free online resource that enables those thinking about end-of-life to research, plan, and arrange a wide variety of funeral-related services. Leah is the editor of eFuneral's Online Resource Center, and she manages the company's marketing efforts and develops strategies for company growth. Leah also serves on the Boards of multiple non-profit organizations, helping them expand their reaches and increase their impacts.