Last Spring I tole you that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) sued Legacy Cremation Services, LLC for false and deceptive advertising regarding their funeral services including advertising low prices on its website and then charging its customers considerably more for their services, and, according to the FTC even threatening or refusing to return cremated remains until they were paid the higher prices.  This case is still being pursued actively by the FTC.

It is hard to imagine a time when people are more vulnerable to being scammed than when they are making funeral arrangements at the time of the death of a loved one.  Fortunately, the FTC established the FTC Funeral Rule which clarifies a number of rights that consumers have in regard to funeral goods and services.  Recently the the FTC disclosed that it is considering changes to the FTC Funeral Rule.


Among the rights provided for in the Funeral Rule, consumers have the right to purchase only the funeral arrangements that they want from a funeral provider.  They do not have to accept a package that may include unwanted and expensive items.

Consumers also have the right to ask for and get price information by phone.  You also have a right to receive a written itemized price list when you go to a funeral parlor.  You also have the right to see a written casket price list before you see the actual caskets which can enable you to ask about lower-priced caskets that may not be on display.  However, the FTC Funeral Rule as it presently reads does not require price information to be provided on a funeral provider’s website and a survey of the FTC found that fewer than 40% of funeral provider websites provide that information.  Consequently the FTC is considering amending the FTC Funeral Rule to make it mandatory to disclose price information on funeral provider websites.

Additionally, you have the right to use a casket or urn that you purchase elsewhere when purchasing funeral services from a particular funeral parlor

Finally, you have the right to receive a written statement that details the precise services being purchased and the costs involved before you pay for funeral services.

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