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PRE-PLANNING: A Thoughtful Decision
Today, more people are recognizing that planning a funeral in advance, demonstrates love and consideration toward their family members. It is a thoughtful decision that reduces the stress of indecision and uncertainty when death occurs. One must always realize that a death of a person is a major event for a whole family and therefore, careful consideration should be given not just what one’s wishes might be but to the family feelings and needs. A family dialogue although often difficult to have is very helpful. Remember a funeral is of the person who has died but is for the family who is here.
Why do people pre-arrange a funeral service for themselves or a family member?
There are many good reasons. Some plan ahead because there will be no one who is capable of making responsible decisions.
Others have a definite preference concerning their disposition, type of service, and type of casket or urn, etc.
Some pre-arrange because they like the peace of mind knowing there will be adequate funds to cover funeral expenses.
Most importantly, pre-arrangement guarantees that rational decisions can be made ahead of time without the usual urgencies when death takes place.
Pre-Arrangement, Pre-Payment or Just A Talk
With the ever changing world, it is hard to keep up with the many options available, malls, cars, medicine, etc. just to name a few. The funeral home and services provided are also continuously evolving. It is not expected that you know about the many services available.
Many families just wish to come in and chit chat about the services and options and gather information for their own knowledge. Others will continue on with more formal arrangements, expressing their wishes which we document and keep on file for further use. We refer to this as Pre-Arrangement Plan. At that point, it may not be to your advantage to actually prepay these services as there may be funds available at the time of death to cover the funeral expenses, Life Insurances, CPP death benefits, R.R.S.P. s , and so on. In other words, one may not need put themselves in financial stress now if funding is available later.
Many of our clients wish to continue further and pay these pre-arrangements prior to the death. This now becomes a Pre-Payment Plan. This can be done at the time of prearranging or one can return to complete this part at any time.
Occasionally we have some families for one reason or another, wish to set aside funds to cover funeral expenses later. They are not interested in making specific decisions at this time, however wish to place funds with us to be used later. These funds are held in Trust and referred to as a Funeral Trust Plan.
What steps are involved?
An appointment is set up with our client (usually made by telephone). After you determine your funeral preferences, we will explain your options and guide you in establishing your own plans. You should find the advice of your family, clergy, and your funeral director especially helpful when considering the options. We will record certain vital information and gather documents for the required forms.
Next, you can select a casket, urn, and other merchandise associated with the type of service desired. Finally, you may choose to pay for the services and merchandise ahead of time or defer this payment to your estate.
What will the pre-arranged funeral service cost?
The cost is a matter of your choice. You are able to decide on the types of services and merchandise. The price is determined at the time one wishes to pay and is based on the cost of that day. Once the funeral is prepaid, the cost does change with inflation. This will be explained more in detail at the time of prearranging.
Even though arranging a funeral occurs at a stressful time, the wise consumer should remember to ask questions. Funeral directors expect questions, and are always ready to consult with families as partners to ensure a dignified and appropriate remembrance of a loved one's life.
How is Pre-Planning Done?
We will meet with you at a time that is convenient, and assist you in recording your wishes. You choose everything you want for your funeral: the type of funeral service, casket, burial vault, music, and flowers. Important obituary information will be recorded. Once you have made your selections, you will learn the payment options available to you. A record of your selections will be kept on file at our funeral home until needed.
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