Frequently Asked Funeral Questions
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Can we still have a service/viewing if we select cremation?
Can a cremation be witnessed by the family?
Is a casket required for cremation to take place?
Is embalming required for cremation?
How long will this all take?
Can I travel or fly with cremains?
Yes, however you should check with your airline. Some airlines will allow you to bring the cremains as carry on, with other airlines you have to ship the cremains as cargo. You will need to have a cremation certificate and disposition/transport permit which should have been given to you when you received the cremains. If possible the urn should be able to be x-rayed (ie. not metal, stone or ceramic). Be advisted that the TSA workers will NOT (even if asked) open the container to inspect contents. If cremains are already in a non x-rayable container ask your funeral director to transfer to a container which can be x-rayed.
Is embalming required?
In California, embalming is not required, except in some unique circumstances. It may actually not be allowed by some religious orders or cultures. If you plan to have a service with viewing for the family, then embalming is recommended. For an identify viewing or a short saying goodbye viewing than embalming is not necessary however it may still be something you wish to do. Your funeral director will be able to give you more guidelines on this.
Where did this ritual of embalming come from?
What is embalming?
Are the internal organs removed during Embalming?
Are special chemicals and cosmetics used?
Veteran and Military Questions
How Much Does VA Pay?
For a non-service-related death – the VA will pay up to $300 toward burial and funeral expenses, and a $300 plot interment allowance if the veteran was receiving a monthly disability payment from the VA at the time of death. If the death happened in a VA hospital or under contracted nursing home care, the cost of moving the deceased may be reimbursed and a $700 burial allowance is payable.
Funeral and Memorial Questions
Can we have a less formal service?
How quickly must a deceased be buried or cremated?
There is no specific time-frame, however if not cremated or buried with 24 hrs then the remains must be refrigerated (if not embalmed). Generally, the funeral service is 2 or 3 days after the passing. This allows travel time for people out of town.[/toggle]
Should young children attend the service?
What are flowers sent for?
Flowers are sent to funerals for several reasons but perhaps the most significant is they are a means of expressing feelings such as love and sympathy – feelings which are often difficult to put into words. They show support and a sharing the burden of grief. They create a feeling of warmth and an uplifting of the service. Some common flowers for a service and their meaning are;
Lilies – life and hope
Chrysanthemums – devotion and loyalty
Statice for remembrance
Roses for love
How can I Delay Having My Funeral
As the expression goes – You are not going to get out alive. There are however some common sense things that you can do to make you time on this planet as long as possible. Have look at our blog article on Avoiding the Funeral Home.
Funeral Home Questions
What contributes to funeral costs?
Funeral costs include both the help of professional staff to assist with dealing with the deceased remains, legal paperwork, flowers, clergy etc and other items you purchases such as a casket or urn. Many funeral homes also have large overhead (facilities, staff etc) which contribute to cost. At “Funerals Your Way” we keep our overhead very low and use technology to give you the best price possible.