Thanks to the Federal Trade Commission, consumers have certain rights when it comes to funerals. Consumers have the right to purchase only the products or services they need, to use the services of a funeral home while declining embalming, to see written price lists before they begin to make decisions, and the right to purchase a casket or urn elsewhere. An undercover FTC investigation, however, discovered that in 30% of the funeral homes they visited, at least one part of the Funeral Rule of 1984 was violated.
What happens to offenders? According to Consumer Reports Money:
To avoid an FTC lawsuit, homes that violate the rule must attend a three-year Funeral Rule Offenders Program, which includes ongoing training, testing and monitoring for compliance. In place of a civil penalty, violators make a voluntary payment to the federal government and pay annual administrative fees to the National Funeral Directors Association, which operates the program.
To avoid overpaying, familiarize yourself with the FTC’s Consumer Guide to Funerals and know your rights.
More than 1/4 of funeral homes violate consumer rules, FTC finds [Consumer Reports]
FTC’s Consumer Guide to Funerals [FTC]