Frequently Asked Questions
- Can I still have a funeral ceremony if I’ve chosen cremation?
- Is it possible to choose cremation as well as a funeral service with the body present prior to the cremation?
- How do you present the cremated remains to my family?
- What is the process for embalming and when is it necessary?
- Does the process of cremation involve removal or alteration of the deceased person’s clothes?
- If the deceased has a pacemaker or other medical device implanted, what happens to it?
- Do I have to call a funeral home at the time of death if my loved one desired cremation?
- What goes on at the crematory?
- What are some of the steps involved with cremation, and how long does the process take?
- Who is legally required to sign the authorization to cremate?
- Are there any legal documents required for cremation services?
- How do I get the certificate of death?
- Why are more and more people choosing cremation over a traditional funeral service? Is it solely based on the cost difference?
- Who will alert Social Security?
Can I still have a funeral ceremony if I’ve chosen cremation?
Cremation comes with a wide variety of options for a ceremony. You may hold a private or a public viewing before cremation occurs, or any type of memorial service can be held in a place of worship or at the cremation service’s facility itself. This ceremony can be delayed as long as you and your family needs to get assembled for the viewing. Some retirement communities and churches will deal with these events without participation needed on the part of the cremation provider. Another possibility would be to hold a graveside service at the crematory or columbarium. Scattering ceremonies are known for giving memorial services a personal touch.
Is it possible to choose cremation as well as a funeral service with the body present prior to the cremation?
Yes, if you and your family desire such a ceremony, the deceased can be embalmed and then put into a ceremonial casket. With cremation you can avoid the cost of any casket and still hold a funeral service prior to your loved one’s cremation.
How do you present the cremated remains to my family?
The remains of your loved are presented to you in whatever fashion you desire. Unless specified by the family, the remains are presented in a plain temporary container about the size of a large dictionary or 6 inch x 6 inch x 6 inch box. It is not recommended to use this box permanently, and we have options available for a permanent resting place for your loved one.
What is the process for embalming and when is it necessary?
Although embalming is not required in the state of Texas, a deceased person would be embalmed out of necessity in the case of a public viewing. Otherwise, this is completely optional.
Does the process of cremation involve removal or alteration of the deceased person’s clothes?
The deceased is clothed as requested by the family in all scenarios. Uniforms, scholastic robes, and all other specifications for cremation are taken into consideration and the special garment is usually neatly folded and placed next to the deceased for the cremation process.
If the deceased has a pacemaker or other medical device implanted, what happens to it?
Large fragments of metal that can readily be separated from the ashes are removed prior to pulverization. Implanted measured dose dispensers and pacemakers are an explosion risk, and are therefore, removed before cremation.
Do I have to call a funeral home at the time of death if my loved one desired cremation?
No. Just call us at 1-800-300-1655 and we will handle all of the details to your closest specifications. You may then, from the comfort of your home, log into our secured server in order to complete the arrangements. You won’t have to leave your home for any reason other than if you chose to hold a memorial or funeral service prior to cremation. We’ve spent many months designing this entire process to best meet your needs, and be as smooth as possible for you.
What goes on at the crematory?
Your loved one is placed in a combustible alternative container. Prior to this, they were placed in refrigerated storage until they were removed for cremation. At the time of cremation, they are taken out and placed in the cremation chamber. The remains go through a pulverization process and are placed in the appropriate container for storage. As for the urn you choose, we offer a wide arrangement of urns and keepsakes to give the deceased the honor and respect they deserve. You can have the cremated remains delivered to your home, or the funeral home where they will wait for direct pickup.
What are some of the steps involved with cremation, and how long does the process take?
After important statistical information is received from the family, a death certificate is then send to the attending physician to verify the time and cause of death and sign for it. The Medical Examiner then receives the certificate and issues a cremation permit after reviewing the case. A Burial Transit Permit is issued after the signed Death Certificate and Cremation Permit is presented to the local registrar’s office. The process totals a minimum of 7 days to complete.
Who is legally required to sign the authorization to cremate?
Those listed below can and will hold the duty, right, and liability to arrange and control the proper disposition (including cremation) of the decedents remains:
- Through written acknowledgement, the decedent can specify means of disposal in a will or some other signed statement.
- Someone identified in an “Appointment of Agent of Remains” form, signed by the deceased person and the individual appointed.
- The surviving spouse of the deceased individual
- Any available adult children of the deceased person
- The surviving parents of the decedent
- Any surviving adult siblings of the decedent
- Any adult individual who is of the next degree of kinship to receive through an inheritance, the deceased individual’s estate.
Are there any legal documents required for cremation services?
- An Authorization for Cremation form signed by the decedent’s next of kin
- The Death Certificate
- The Medical Examiner’s Cremation Permit
- And the Burial Transit Permit issued by the Local Registrar.
How do I get the certificate of death?
Our staff will help you get any of the required copies of the Death Certificate you may need. Death certificates are available to you through the Vital Statistics office of the county in which the death occurred. Although the original certificate comes from our office, it is then sent to the certifying physician involved. As soon as his signature and verification are procured and approved by the Medical Examiner, that form is sent to the local Vital Statistics office, and that office will provide copies of the death certificate.In the State of Texas, a $21 fee is charged for the first certified death certificate. After that, a $4 fee is charged for each additional death. Most of the time, our office will get you the copies of the death certificate and you won’t have to worry about going through the county to get them.
Why are more and more people choosing cremation over a traditional funeral service? Is it solely based on the cost difference?
It is a well-known fact that cremations run about 20% the cost of burial, but some surveys would suggest that the reasons the popularity is rising might be due to other factors. Those factors include the simplicity and dignity of a cremation service, some environmental concerns, and the flexible nature of cremation funeral services compared to burials. Cremation is being chosen as a means of disposition for more than a third of all deaths in some parts of the country. The practice of cremation is practically as old as humanity itself, and having been in practice for centuries in other cultures, it is not new to the world by any means. The current and more modern approach is a simple reflection of our growing appreciation for the simplicity and dignity of the cremation rite.
Who will alert Social Security?
We send the initial death notification to the Social Security office. In the event that a death occurs, Social Security has to be told. We encourage you to call the Social Security office at your earliest convenience to determine if benefits will need to be returned to Social Security and if the survivor (you) qualify for any Survivor Benefits from them. For more information on this, you can visit the Social Security Administration website.