Most families that have just experienced a loss have no pre-planning in place and no idea who to call or where to turn. With or without pre-planning, the services of an experienced funeral arranger are indispensable when there is a death in the family and final arrangements are being made.
Funeral arrangers will often be the first point of contact for family members who have just lost a loved one. They are responsible for understanding the family’s needs and offering support and advice. Funeral arrangers work closely with funeral directors to establish a plan for the funeral, all while managing housekeeping duties and ensuring health and safety procedures are carried out correctly in funeral homes. They also work with religious organizations, veteran honors programs, and cemeteries to help coordinate the specifics dictated by these kinds of special requirements.
When first sitting down with your arranger, it’s important to make sure specific decision maker(s) are in the room to answer questions and provide needed documents, such as:
- Current photograph of the loved one
- Advance Health Care Directive and/or Durable Power of Attorney
- Social Security Card, ID/Driver’s License, and Medicare Card
- Any last funeral-related wishes that were included in a will or trust
Before the family schedules an appointment to meet with the funeral home, the Funeral Arranger should have most of the information about the loved one being cared for, and the responsible party authorized to make the arrangements. Correct paperwork can then be generated, making it easier for the family to approve, sign, and get the legally required documents approved, and planning underway.
Too often families coming in to make arrangements for a recently deceased family member or friend don’t have everything in place, and this causes unnecessary complications. Once again, preplanning is critically important. It’s the only way to make sure things go smoothly when funerals are being planned and final arrangements made.
Contributing to this blog:
National Funeral Directors Association:www.nfda.org