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When you make the decision to plan your funeral, cremation or memorial service in advance, you need to know what questions you should ask. Prepaid funerals can save you and your loved ones time and money in the long run and they make sense. While it may be difficult to face your own mortality and make plans for your own funeral, it is an eventuality and when you take the time to make arrangements before you pass away, you can actually help your family in their moment of grief.

When you make the decision to find out more about prepaid funerals, there are a few questions that you should ask your funeral director before you sign up with one specific plan.

How long has this company been in business?

When you are investing money in a prepaid funeral, you have the right to feel secure that the funeral home that you make arrangements with will stay in business for as long as you live. You should ask the funeral home if it has a contingency plan if it does go out of business.

What guarantees do you offer that my wishes will be carried out?

It may seem silly to ask your funeral home to provide you with guarantees of their services, but there are no federal laws that govern funeral planning and each state has very different laws; some are very strict, while others are barely existent. By asking your funeral director to provide guarantees, you are being proactive in ensuring that your wishes are carried out upon your death.

Are the funds held 100% in a trust at a bank?

One way to ensure that your money goes to your funeral and it is not rolled into the funeral home’s monthly income is to make certain that the money you pay toward your prepaid funeral is deposited in a trust that’s backed by a reputable financial institution. The money cannot be touched until you pass away and has been set aside explicitly for use at your funeral.

Can I get a refund if I change my mind?

Read the fine print carefully. Many funeral homes do not offer a refund on prepaid funerals if you decide that you want to go a different direction. Before you invest any money in your funeral, check to see what the refund policy is, if one even exists at all.

What happens if I move?

While many funeral homes are chains and are interconnected across state lines, there are still mom and pop homes all over the country and, while it’s always enticing to support local businesses, make sure they have a plan in place if you decide to move to a new state. You don’t want to lose the money you’ve already invested in your prepaid funeral simply because your funeral home has no other alternative to their funeral home.

When you go into a funeral home to have the discussion about prepaid funerals, it’s important that you take the time to make sure all of your questions are answered to your full satisfaction. It is your money, and you have the right to feel secure in your investment.

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