What To Expect

What Should I Expect?

Experiencing the loss of a loved one can be an overwhelming and disorienting experience, leaving you feeling isolated and uncertain about where to seek support and guidance. In order to assist you during this difficult time, we have compiled relevant information and resources to help direct you toward the support you may need.

Funeral Planning Timeline

Meeting with the funeral home

Within 24 hours of your loved one’s passing, schedule a meeting with a funeral home. Consider asking a family member, neighbor, or friend to accompany you for support. Include others in the decision-making process, such as children, friends, and additional family members, as their input can be valuable, even if they lack legal decision-making rights.

Determine the decision-making hierarchy in the absence of written directives:
  • Legal spouse/partner
  • Surviving adult child/children
  • Surviving parent
  • Surviving adult sibling
  • Ex-spouse
  • Parent of minor child

Funeral Merchandise Selection

When deciding between burial or cremation, you’ll need to select funeral products. For burials, choose from various caskets, including wood, metal, or cloth-covered options, with customization available. Burial vaults, essential for preventing grave settling, come in standard or upgraded versions for extended protection. In the case of cremation, opt for a cremation urn, ranging from basic models for spreading ashes to ornate ones for display.

Additional memorialization options include keepsakes such as:
  • Jewelry
  • Urns

Necessary Documents

Dealing with the loss of a loved one is a challenging experience that involves not only emotional distress but also various legal responsibilities. During this difficult time, the funeral home director serves as a valuable resource, offering assistance and guidance in completing and submitting essential documents such as the death certificate and burial or cremation permit.

Please bring the following items, belonging to the deceased, to the funeral home for a smoother process:
  • Birth certificate
  • Marriage certificate
  • Military discharge papers
  • Funeral pre-arrangements documents (if available)
  • Durable power of attorney for health care
  • Last will and testament and any codicils
  • Revocable living trust

Planning Details

The funeral or memorial service plays a crucial role in the healing process. During a planning conference with the funeral director, decisions about the venue, date, and time must be made. You can select a minister, church leader, or someone you’re comfortable with to preside over the service. It’s beneficial to provide the funeral director with a list of people to notify about the loved one’s passing.

Venue options for the funeral or memorial service include:
  • Family’s church
  • Family home
  • Funeral home chapel
  • Place significant to the deceased.

Burial or Cremation

This decision takes into account a diverse array of factors. These include but are not limited to longstanding traditions, deeply held personal beliefs, considerations of time constraints, and a comprehensive analysis of associated costs.

What happens next?

After the guests leave and real life resumes, reaching out to friends or family for support is key. Prioritize self-care with ample rest. Organize essential financial details such as assets, liabilities, and subscriptions. Stay on top of bills and consider professional help for tasks like tax filing and legal matters to make the transition smoother.

Secure online preplanning form

A secure online preplanning form ensures private and efficient documentation of important future arrangements, providing peace of mind.

Prefunding Options

Prefunding provides a gift of love and peace of mind for you and those you care most about. 

Advanced Planning

Advanced funeral planning enables individuals to make personalized arrangements ahead of time, easing the burden on loved ones during a difficult period.

If you have questions about what you should bring with you, or anything else you may need, give us a call.