When selecting a funeral bureau, the prices they charge must be explained in an itemized statement. The funeral establishment should not make false promises about casket preservation, nor should they charge for contagious disease fees, or for protective clothing. Likewise, the funeral establishment should provide a detailed estimate of all fees and costs for the items they select. Generally, the final bill will include everything from the obituary to taxes and insurance. It should also include any unallocated overhead.
Consumers can also contact the California Department of Consumer Affairs, which investigates complaints filed by funeral homes. Consumers can also view the number of disciplinary actions and administrative citations for funeral homes. However, these results may take time to update due to the cemetery’s processing timeframes. Furthermore, the information provided by the California Department of Consumer Affairs does not represent a comprehensive view of a funeral home’s operations. Thus, there is no guarantee that it will be accurate.
If the complaint is proven legitimate, a consumer may seek an administrative hearing. In these cases, the CFB can sanction the funeral director, strip the license, or impose other sanctions. The applicant has fifteen days to respond to any allegations before a default judgment stripping their license. The consumer can also request a statement of issues. If the funeral director refuses to respond within the timeframe, the consumer may have the right to retain counsel.
The California Cemetery and Funeral Bureau is a regulatory body for funeral establishments in the state. This organization investigates complaints regarding embalmers, apprentice embalmers, and cemetery brokers and salespeople. The Bureau oversees nearly 200 licensed cemeteries and investigates all complaints filed against them. The Bureau also investigates complaints filed against cremation facilities. The Bureau of Professional Regulation also investigates embalmers’ practices. There are many other regulations that affect funeral businesses and regulating them is one of the most important.
Cemetery services include opening graves, setting markers, and placing vaults. Cemetery services may be required to follow certain maintenance standards. These standards dictate how the cemetery is to be endowed and the number of items that need to be placed in natural-condition sections. Consumers should be provided with these documents upon request. Some funeral bureaus also offer burial space in columbaria, which is a type of burial chamber. Depending on the type of burial, this space may be part of a mausoleum or an outdoor grave.
Some of these services are optional and include basic services provided by the funeral director, local transportation to the cemetery, and an immediate burial. If a decedent has sufficient assets, they may elect to have a public administrator administer their affairs. However, there are times when they may want to direct the burial or cremation of the deceased’s body. In these cases, the funeral establishment will provide basic services and a proportionate portion of the cost of the cremation or burial.
The funeral establishment must provide a copy of the preneed agreement and disclose its costs and ranges. Preneed agreements, on the other hand, include some costs that cannot be pre-paid. For instance, services like opening graves may not be covered by a preneed trust agreement. Such costs must be paid for at the time of the death. If the deceased person had preneed agreement with the funeral establishment, they would have been able to receive the preneed contract.
The South Dakota Board of Funeral Service licenses funeral practitioners and establishments and investigates complaints from consumers. In addition, the bureau registers apprentices and students in funeral service. Additionally, it oversees continuing education for funeral directors. The bureau may also conduct inspections of funeral homes and issue certificates to cremation authorities. The funeral bureau is required to maintain the state’s minimum standards of service, and it has jurisdiction over any complaints filed by consumers. If a deceased person died in a cremation, their cremated remains must be disposed of in a manner that is appropriate for the deceased.
As the industry continues to grow and adapt to client needs, the role of the funeral bureau is changing to meet the demands of their clients. The profession has become more involved in hospice care, where the funeral director and hospice care providers work closely together and discuss the patient’s preferences and wishes during the final stage. Even when the deceased person has not planned ahead, the funeral home can provide guidance to the family on funeral arrangements, including caskets and burial permits.