When creating their estate plans many people also plan ahead for their funerals. It is a good time to do it as once funeral costs are known, making the money available for the funeral can become a part of the estate plan. A survey shows, however, that getting that pricing information is not always easy.
Recently, the Funeral Consumers Alliance and the Consumer Federation of America conducted a survey of 150 funeral homes in the U.S. to see how easy it was to obtain information about funeral costs. The groups found that only 25% of the funeral homes revealed costs on their websites. Alarmingly, 16% did not reveal prices on their website or after being asked by email and phone.
The Federal Trade Commission requires that pricing information be given over the phone or by a price list when customers visit the funeral home. The consumer groups are calling for the FTC to expand the rule to make disclosing prices on funeral home websites mandatory.
Elder Law Answers reported on this survey in "Getting Funeral Pricing Information Is Difficult, Survey Shows."
Obtaining funeral costs and getting an estate plan often go hand in hand. Many people choose to provide the funds for their funerals in their estate plans and it is difficult to do so without having some idea of the costs. However, an estate planning attorney might be able to give clients an estimate of how much money is customarily set aside for funeral costs in the area, which is a roundabout way of determining the costs even if funeral homes are reluctant to reveal the information themselves.