Pre-arranging your own service (or being involved with the pre-arrangments for a loved one) will help ease the burden on your loved ones when death has occurred. This will allow you to make most of the decisions about services and merchandise and relieve grieving loved ones of this difficult process. The only decision remaining will be the day and time of the service. But this is not the only option. Some families just want to have their wishes on file, while others only want an idea of cost, while still others want all their information on file with services prepaid. It is entirely up to you and what you would like to accomplish. The end result is almost always peace of mind. I have never been told by a family they regretted a pre-arranged service.
Making pre-arrangements can still be difficult when confronting one's own mortality and when discussing that mortality with family members. But it is important to consider the needs of family members who will remain to mourn the loss. Often their needs and desires are different from the individual making the arrangements. I always advise those interested in making pre-arrangements to consider the needs of their loved ones and have the discussion about what their wishes are. Some will not be comfortable talking about such matters, while others will be grateful for your consideration. Making pre-arrangements can also alleviate questions, problems or differences which can occur among family members.
Pre-payment will protect you from the rising cost of prices if you have a guaranteed price contract, and it will not be a financial burden on your loved ones. If you have a non-guaranteed price contract (for example you prepay $10,000.00 to go toward actual funeral expenses) those funds will grow and will go toward funeral expenses at the time of death but are not guaranteed. When making pre-arrangements for someone who needs government assistance for long term care, an irrevocable assignment is utilized to set aside the pre-arrangement funds from your assets so that the government does not consider them when calculating your assets. Any pre-arrangement that is made is also transferable to whatever funeral home provides the services. So, if you have made pre-arrangements with another funeral home they are transferable here and vice versa. When a pre-arrangement is transferred, the receiving funeral home is not required to guarantee the previous funeral home's contract.
In Illinois, all pre-need funeral funds must be held in trust by a bank that is a corporate fiduciary or an insurance company. We have partnered with Pekin Life Insurance Company to assure the security of any pre-need funeral funds. All pre-need funds are also audited regularly by the Illinois Comptrollers Office.
You may be wondering, what if I already have an insurance policy that would cover my final expenses. In instances where we receive a pre-existing insurance policy, we treat it as a non guaranteed contract. We will make a claim against the policy when that time comes, but we cannot guarantee (lock in) the funeral cost. The funeral cost will be whatever our charges are at that time. Sometimes it is necessary to assign an existing policy to the funeral home due to needing government assistance. This is something we can assist you with. We will walk through the necessary steps with you and your insurance company. It is not required by the state to surrender the policy for cash. However, if the face amount of the policy (the death benefit) is greater than the at-need funeral cost, the state will require the excess funds to be sent to them for taking over the long term care expenses.
If you have questions about what funerals cost, we have made our charges available online for your convenience. Perhaps you have a question about something that I have not covered here about pre-arrangements, or if you would prefer to speak with a licensed professional, don't hesitate to call (618) 252-1711.
Arrangements can be made from the comfort of your own home by clicking the button below. Fill in as much as you are comfortable with. If needed we are available to meet with you to discuss pre-arrangements further. Just call the number above to schedule an appointment. See the form below for details.