A Texas widow already had to deal with saying goodbye to her beloved husband of 56 years and now? She doesn’t even have the comfort of knowing where exactly his final resting place is. She’s suing the cemetery that buried him in order to get confirmation of his location, because at first the cemetery told the family they’d have to pay up if they wanted that information. [More]
A woman in Florida was recently visiting her father’s grave when she noticed there was something amiss with the burial plot reserved for her mother — someone was already buried in it. [More]
A couple in New Jersey thought they had made the final payment on their prepaid funeral arrangements 30 years ago. That is, until the cemetery called to tell them they still owed more than $2,000 if they ever hoped to actually be entombed in the crypt they had purchased. [More]
Sure, it’s maybe a bit morbid to think about buying your cemetery plot now, when you’re so young and healthy and, you know, breathing. But burial expenses are, well, expensive; that’s why you see all those ads for “life insurance” advertised to old people on daytime TV. So if you’re looking now to save a bit of cash for you or your loved ones’ eternal resting places, you might want to consider snapping up your patch of ground now. [More]
The last place you want to find The Other Woman is on her back next to your husband. Especially when he’s dead. A woman named Lillas Hawkins in California found just that when she went to visit her husband’s grave two weeks ago. When she pointed out the error to a cemetery worker, she says he responded, “We are in terrible trouble.” The cemetery is owned by a company named Dignity. [More]
Remember Burr Oak this past summer? That was the Chicago cemetery that dug up bodies and resold the graves to new customers. Well, yesterday a U.S. Representative from Illinois introduced the Bereaved Consumers Protection Act, a bill that would standardize record-keeping, make cemeteries accountable to federal officials as well as state, and protect consumers from shady business practices.
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.
Someone wrote to us this week that a person in his family is terminally ill, and that he was told “that the cost of the casket, funeral, viewing, and burial would possibly exceed 12,000 dollars.” He thinks that’s an “exorbitant amount of money,” and so do we. There is no reason to pay that much money for a kick-ass funeral that people will be talking about for years to come. You don’t need to be a cheapskate to manage this, either—you just need to be aware of your rights and know what traps to watch out for. Here’s our list of what to do the next time you have to plan a funeral.