There are many factors to consider when arranging a cremation for a loved one. With simple, partial and full cremation packages, it may be difficult to understand all the options available to you and your family.
One of the most important decisions to make is selecting a reputable cremation provider. You want to be confident that your loved one is handled with the utmost care, so choose a provider you can trust.
For more information on why your cremation provider matters, plus tips to finding the right one for your family, continue reading below.
Choose a cremation provider with a clear chain of custody.
No matter what service(s) you choose, a reputable provider should have a clear chain of custody throughout the cremation process.
This refers to the “chronological documentation of the custody, control, transfer, analysis and disposition of the deceased.”
A clear chain of custody demonstrates professionalism by establishing and adhering to policies and procedures consistent with best practices. This includes providing your family with an ID tag to confirm the identity of the cremated remains post-cremation are those of your loved one.
The provider should outline the steps in the cremation process—from receipt of the deceased to return of the cremated remains. This should include the associated forms, as well as the verification and documentation required.
Choose a cremation provider who follows guidelines.
Each state has its own rules and regulations governing cremation. For example, embalming is not required in the state of Ohio for simple cremation, but a body must be embalmed, refrigerated or placed in an odor-proof container within 48 hours after a death.
In Ohio, there are three basic legal requirements before a cremation can take place. These include:
- For a cremation to occur, a minimum of 24 hours must elapse after the death. During this time, it's required to obtain a death certificate before final disposition of the body.
- An authorized individual must give permission for the cremation in writing through a legally binding authorization form.
- A burial transit permit for cremation from the registrar of the county in which the death occurred must be secured. This allows you to move the body for purposes of burial or cremation.
You’ll want to ask about these requirements when researching funeral homes and crematories because only law-abiding providers will follow the proper rules and regulations.
Choose a provider with an on-site crematory.
Some funeral homes use a third-party crematory, where the body temporarily leaves the care of the staff. In the past, funeral homes have been criticized for carelessly mixing up cremated remains during the cremation process.
To ensure that your family won’t be a victim of cremation mix-up, choose a service provider that has an on-site crematory. You’ll be more confident knowing your loved one’s body remains under the care of one facility throughout the entire process. This also gives you a chance to tour the facility to ensure the provider is following guidelines.
If a provider outsources their cremations, inquire about how they guarantee that the cremated remains you receive are those of your loved one.
Choose a cremation provider that answers your questions.
To get the best value without sacrificing service, it's important that you understand your options when it comes to cremation. Make sure to choose a provider that answers your questions.
Common questions about cremation include:
- Can you help me understand your price ranges?
- What services or goods are included?
- If the crematory is off-site, where will my loved one be transferred for the cremation, and can I contact the off-site crematory?
- Can I be present for the cremation process?
- How will the cremated remains be returned to me?
Some families ask to see the cremation facility to check for cleanliness. If the provider refuses to show you where the cremation takes place, they may be unhappy with the aesthetics of their facility. In this case, consider another cremation provider.
>>>Related Resource: Get access to more questions to ask before choosing a cremation provider.
Learn Everything You Need to Know About Cremation
To learn everything you need to know before arranging a cremation, download Cremation Costs Explained: How to Get the Best Value Without Sacrificing Service. This guide will help you understand your options with cremation, and assist you as you choose a plan that fits your needs and wishes.