Eight years ago, a woman in Connecticut buried her late husband on their 8-acre property, where previous owners had been interring the dead for generations. But her subsequent attempt to make sure this was all okay with local authorities has led her on a legal wild goose chase all the way to the state Supreme Court — and now all the way back to where she started. [More]
Historically, it’s not unheard of to dig up graves, move bones to a different site, and re-use those graves. It only becomes problematic when cemetery staff take it upon themselves to re-use cemetery plots already bought, paid for, and occupied, and dump the occupants in a pile of weeds out back. That’s what employees of a historic black cemetery in Chicago did.
A non-profit group recently surveyed the prices at 49 different mortuaries and crematoriums in San Diego, and found that “prices vary widely, with some mortuaries charging nearly twice as much as others for similar combinations of services.” Although the study focuses on one city, it’s a good reminder that you should check around and not assume that pricing is consistent throughout the industry.
Biodegradable coffins allow you to rest in peace without putting a permanent dent in the planet or your wallet.
The former owner of a funeral home in Princeton, British Columbia, has been charged with fraud for handing out random urns of ashes to his customers. The funeral home had been shut down in 2005 for operating without a license, but since it’s rather difficult to spot the “wrong” ashes by sight, the problem wasn’t discovered until another funeral home began to sort through the leftover inventory and found over 50 urns that had been labeled unclaimed.
Cremation is catching fire as Americans look for low-cost, low-resource alternatives to burial. Cremation often costs half as much as traditional funerals – $4,000 instead of $8,000 – and does not require wood or land space. This combination is putting the heat on traditional funeral homes.
In theory, death care should be immune from short-term economic swings. Death is one of only two sure things in life, and the U.S. population is aging.