Preplanning your own funeral is a true act of love to your surviving family members. When an individual dies, families are faced with upwards of 125 decisions if final wishes aren’t documented.
Preplanning your own funeral gives your loved ones peace of mind, while allowing you to document your final wishes and pay for arrangements. This saves family members from sudden financial burdens and stressful decisions.
However, as you go through the preplanning journey, you’ll likely realize that you have questions about the planning process.
That’s where a funeral director comes in— your personal guide to help you understand your options, move you through the process, and most importantly, answer any questions you have throughout your preplanning journey. That way, when the time comes to say your final goodbyes, you and your family can focus on your last moments together.
Below we answer five common questions about how preplanning works. Take time to review the list, and speak with a funeral director for specifics on a preplanning policy.
1. What are the benefits of preplanning?
Planning a funeral is one of the most stressful situations individuals face in a lifetime.
By preplanning, you relieve your family from handling arrangements on their own. This helps ease the burden your family must face when planning a funeral— from both a financial and emotional standpoint.
With preplanning, you work with an advisor to document your final wishes. Together, the two of you design a personalized tribute that reflects your preferred final arrangements, including:
- Your choice between cremation or burial.
- What items you’d like (ex: casket, headstone, cremation urn).
- Personal touches (ex: music at a funeral or your favorite photos displayed).
This ensures that your final wishes are documented for your family to carry out.
2. Can I prepay?
While not required, most people who preplan their funeral also pre-fund it. When you prepay, make sure you have a clear understanding of guaranteed items that will not increase in costs, and what is not guaranteed that will increase in costs.
Depending on the funeral home, you can choose to pre-pay for your funeral all at once or through a flexible payment plan. From there, the money is deposited within 30 days to a bank or insurance company. The funds are held and inaccessible to your selected funeral home until you pass and the services are performed. If you elect a payment plan, some policies will cover the remaining balance, should you pass before covering the full cost.
3. Can I transfer my prearranged plan to a different funeral home?
Under Ohio law, all prearranged plans are 100% transferrable at any time. The cost you agreed upon during your initial prearrangement contract is final. However, it’s important to note that under certain conditions, you may not be refunded for a cost difference.
In the event a funeral home goes out of business or comes under new ownership, your policy is safe and easily transferrable as well.
4. Do I need to preplan if I already have life insurance?
The purpose of life insurance is to help alleviate your surviving loved ones of financial loss or hardship in the event of your death. For instance, life insurance may help cover the costs of debts or taxes after your passing.
Some families expect life insurance to cover all funeral expenses, but that isn’t always the case. Depending on your life insurance coverage, your family may be subject to pay for the funeral. It may take weeks, or even months for your family to receive the reimbursement from the insurance company.
Prepaid funeral policies are designed to pay for your funeral expenses. If you prepay, your family doesn’t have to worry about the payment of the funeral. Plus, they’ll still have life insurance to take care of your affairs.
5. Can I cancel my preplanning arrangements or make changes?
You can cancel your preplanning arrangement and receive a full refund within 30 days of signing the contract. You can also make changes to your preplanned funeral arrangements at any time without canceling. Simply contact your preplanning advisor and set up an appointment.
Relieve Your Family From Funeral Burden and Preplan Your Funeral
As a fourth-generation family-owned and operated funeral home, Busch Funeral and Crematory Services takes personal pride in offering the highest quality of service to the communities we support. To give you and your loved one peace of mind, we invite you to schedule a preplanning consultation with Busch. Our preplanning advisors can explain your options, answer your questions and walk you through the process. Our pre-planning advisors do the consultation without obligation.
Not ready to schedule a consultation? Download the Seniors’ Guide to Funeral Arrangements for more information on how preplanning can save time, money and worry.
Image credit: Unsplash