Why do we have funerals?
A. It's important to recognize
that funerals and memorial ceremonies are for
the living ... for those who are affected by
the loss of a loved one. It is through the funeral
process that a number of emotional needs are
met for those who grieve.
A funeral is similar to other
ceremonies in our lives. Like a graduation ceremony,
a wedding, a baptism, and a bar mitzvah, a funeral
is a rite of passage by which we recognize an
important event that distinguishes our lives.
The funeral declares
that a death has occurred. It celebrates the
life that has been lived, and offers family
and friends the opportunity to pay tribute to
their loved one.
Q. Why should I pre-arrange
A. There are many different
reasons for pre-arranging a funeral. Some persons,
especially those who are alone in the world,
may want the assurance of a funeral and burial
which meet their personal beliefs, standards
or life-style. Others feel a responsibility
to assist survivors by arranging approximate
funeral and burial cost guidelines. Still others
have moved to distant places, or maintain both
summer and winter residences. They may want
to make sure that certain recommendations are
heeded as to where the funeral and burial or
other final disposition will take place. Actually,
there are almost as many explanations for pre-arranging
funerals as there are people requesting them.
Q. Can I pay for my
funeral in advance?
A. Yes. Pre-payment consists
of depositing money into a bank allowing for
payment of future funeral services. Reasons
for pre-payment vary from removing the financial
burden from your survivors to Medicaid acceptance.
Pre-payment is regulated by the State of New
York Department of Health.
Q. What kind of payment options do you offer?
Funeral arrangements can be a difficult task and one for which many are not well prepared. One of the ways we accommodate families in this regard is to offer different payment options for the expenses involved.
1. We accept checks or cash
2. We accept Via or Master Card for all or part of the funeral home charges
3. We accept payment from a pre-arranged trust account that has been established with a local bank
4. Insurance assignment, with policy presented at the time of funeral arrangements. We can assist the family with most insurance claims and there is no charge for handling these applications. Financial arrangements other than the above need to be discussed and agreed upon prior to the conclusion of the funeral arrangements. It is not our policy to wait for payment from an Estate. The beneficiaries of an Estate and/ or the individuals who engage us are expected to pay for all expenses and they will be first to be reimbursed from the Estate assets. It is our intention to assist each family any way we are able with these financial arrangements.
Q. Can you help us with our insurance claim?
We know that filing insurance claims can be a confusing, time consuming procedure, and unfamiliar forms are just another burden. That is the reason many families ask us if we can assist in handling life insurance policies.
We have claim forms for most insurance companies and we are familiar with how they should be completed and what needs to accompany them when they are filed. We can make sure that these important benefits are obtained without delay. We know that this is the kind of extra service that families appreciate, especially in time of stress.
Q Is embalming required
A. New York State does not
require that a body be embalmed and, in fact,
this should not be done without authorization
of the people making the funeral arrangements.
if the body will not be disposed of within a
reasonable time after death, embalming may be
indicated, but this is not legally required.
Q. If I choose cremation,
can I also have a funeral or memorial service?
A. Yes, you can. Many people
who choose cremation elect to have some form
of religious or secular service. Some have a
funeral service with the casket present, while
others will have a memorial service, either
prior to or following the cremation.
Q. Should children
attend a funeral?
A. Whether or not a child should attend a funeral
is a personal decision to be made with the child.
If the child was close to the deceased it is
fine for the child to attend if he or she feels
comfortable doing so. The best thing to do is
to talk to the child about how they are feeling
and answer their questions about what a funeral
is and what will happen there. If the child
is old enough leave the decision up to them.
If the child is younger they may not fully understand
what is happening and may not benefit from attendance
and therefore a parent should be involved in
If you have additional questions,
please call us in Hornell at 607-324-2700
or in Avoca at 607-566-2300.