OFDA Brochure - Pre-Planning a Funeral
Planning is an important part of identifying your goals and subsequently reaching those goals. When it comes to taking care of your family and loved ones, planning is especially important.
Planning your estate, no matter the size, is the crucial first step in protecting the lifetime goals your have set for yourself and your family. The foundation of any estate plan is a will. Having a will ensures that your wishes and plans are carried out without unnecessary delay. Other aspects of estate planning include: updating insurance policies, managing investments and savings, and planning for retirement.
Pre-planning a funeral for yourself or a loved one is also a vital part of estate planning. With all the details arranged in advance, the funeral will proceed as planed - without requiring last-minute decisions and without being an unexpected financial burden.
What Is Involved In Pre-Planning?
There are two phases in pre-planning a funeral - pre-arrangement and/or pre-financing.
Pre-arrangement involves the selection of funeral-related products and services. Some or all of the following might be a part of the pre-arrangement process:
- Discussing your wishes with family, relatives or friends
- Indicating procedures for handling the affairs of the deceased
- Selecting specific funeral products, e.g., a casket, outer burial containers
- Selecting specific funeral services, e.g., burial or cremation services
- Entering a binding contract with our funeral home to assure the proper delivery of specified products
Pre-financing, as the name implies, simply means paying for the selected products and services in advance. In some instances, prepaying these expenses will guarantee the prices and serve as a "hedge" against inflation. It may also exempt such funds from your personal assets when applying for Medicaid assistance.
Who Should Pre-Plan?
As ironic as it may seem, people in the prime of life should give serious consideration to making funeral arrangements in advance. The prime of life is a time when all kinds of plans are being made for the future. Prudent planners will recognize the inevitability of death and consider it in their planning.
In addition, the survivors of people who die in their prime are generally shocked by such a death. As a rule, making funeral arrangements may be especially confusing and stressful to them. Pre-planning can help alleviate some of this stress and confusion.
Finally, the financial benefit can be greater for people who invest in a pre-need program at an earlier age because of the effect of inflation. Furthermore, it is often the case that people in mid-life are best prepared to make a financial investment.
Others who should consider pre-planning are individuals who have no close relatives or people who want to have final rites in a place they no longer live.
What Is The Next Step?
For more information concerning this important aspect of estate planning, ask us about the pre-planning options available to you. We can explain the options of pre-planning and/or pre-financing to develop a plan that meets your individual needs.
By planning now, you will ensure peace of mind for yourself and your family. When death does occur, one phone call to us will ensure your funeral wishes will be handled properly.