While it can be sad to think about death, it is important to think ahead and incorporate funeral planning into your estate planning. This can be a way for you to express your wishes so that family and friends can easily plan your funeral arrangements. Take a look at some of the frequently asked questions regarding funeral planning.
Why should I provide written instructions?
You may think that your loved ones know your final wishes, but they may have a different idea in mind. By providing written instructions regarding your funeral planning, your family will be able to easily make decisions during a difficult time.
What things will I need to include in my planning?
Your funeral planning instructions can include a variety of things. You may want to consider the following:
- Do you want to be buried or cremated?
- Do you want to have a ceremony after your funeral or scattering?
- Where do you want your body buried or scattered?
- Do you have any location preferences for a ceremony?
- Do you have any special requests for your burial or ceremony?
Where should I leave written instructions?
Most people choose to leave these instructions with the executor of their estate and an attorney. It is also a good idea to make copies and give written instructions to your family members. This will help to make sure that all family members know and respect your wishes.
What happens if you do not provide funeral arrangement instructions?
If you do not write down your wishes, state law will determine who will make these decisions. Most states follow this order: spouse, children, parents, next of kin, and public administrator (appointed by court).
This may mean that your wishes are not granted. This is why it is important to have written funeral arrangement instructions.
If you have questions about funeral arrangements or estate planning in general, consult an experienced estate planning attorney.