Navigating the Complexities of Prepaid Funeral Plans

Guidance for Selecting Funeral Products and Services

As you consider planning for the future, one aspect that may cross your mind is making arrangements for your funeral. While being proactive is commendable, the team at Wilson & Wilson Estate Planning and Elder Law LLC urges you to tread carefully when it comes to prepaid funeral plans.

The concept of shopping around for funeral services and products to find something that is both fitting and financially sensible is a smart approach. Yet, the act of prepaying for these services warrants a heightened level of caution.

Despite the presence of legal frameworks governing the management of funds earmarked for future funeral services, the industry is not without its pitfalls. Alarming instances of mismanagement, including misappropriation and outright theft of prepaid funds, have been brought to light. Countless more such violations remain unreported, often due to the overwhelming embarrassment or profound grief felt by bereaved family members.

The risks to consumers in prepaying for funeral services don’t end there. Should a funeral home shutter its doors, those who have prepaid could find themselves bereft of both the services they expected and the means to seek restitution. Relocation can also pose an issue, as individuals may discover their prepaid funds are non-transferable or can only be retrieved at a significant loss. Furthermore, locking in today's prices does not guarantee the coverage of future cost increases, potentially leaving loved ones to shoulder the additional financial burden.

In lieu of tying up your funds in precarious prepaid plans, consider establishing a Totten trust with a reputable bank or savings institution. This type of trust is designed specifically to cover the costs of your end-of-life arrangements and offers several key benefits. With a Totten trust, not only can the funds be transferred or accessed with ease should your circumstances change, but you also retain complete control over your assets throughout your lifetime.

For personalized guidance on how to securely plan for your future funeral arrangements, we invite you to take advantage of a free consultation with our knowledgeable attorneys. Contact Wilson & Wilson Estate Planning and Elder Law LLC at (708) 482-7090, where we are prepared to assist you with the meticulous planning required to provide peace of mind for both you and your family.

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