Established Funeral Rules that Protect Consumers Dealing with Funeral Homes in West Virginia
Did you know that there is something called the Funeral Rule that protects your interests when dealing with West Virginia funeral homes? Enforced by the Federal Trade Commission, the Funeral Rule is actually effective in all states. However, each individual state might enforce extra regulations specific to their business practices. The funeral business has many facets so this federal law enables you to pick and choose the elements you want when dealing with funeral homes in West Virginia.
The majority of funeral providers are professionals that work hard to ensure the funeral or memorial you are planning is a meaningful one. However, as with other businesses, some professionals running West Virginia funeral homes in the past inflated pricing, tacked on unneeded services and overcharged clients. Luckily, the Funeral Rule makes things much easier for you to choose only the goods and services that you want, without having accept bundled packaging with items and service that are not desired.
Funeral Homes in West Virginia Provide a General Price List (GPL)
The federal Funeral Rule requires West Virginia funeral homes to give you a general itemized price list when you visit in person or even over the phone. All states have to comply with this ruling. This step in providing the general price list must be accomplished before even one detail is addressed in funeral planning. The same principle applies when purchasing a casket or burial container.
Casket and Outer Burial Container Pricing - There's a Price List for That
Funeral homes in West Virginia must also present to you a price list for caskets, outer burial containers and alternative containers as well as their descriptions before viewing them. This is yet another aspect to the federal Funeral Rule enforced by the Federal Trade Commission. A state regulation requires that the least expensive container option be displayed as well.
West Virginia funeral homes also must allow caskets or alternative containers purchased from a third party source or even made by hand. Any kit you purchase to craft a casket or a container you purchase from another source has to comply with the law in order for them to be marketed so you should be safe if you follow this route. Funeral homes in West Virginia also cannot charge an extra fee for handling the container or casket that was not purchased through them.
A La Carte Pricing and Selection with West Virginia Funeral Homes
A number of providers of death care create package pricing of the most common services and goods that the average person asks for in funeral planning. Funeral homes in West Virginia, as part of the Funeral Rule, must allow you to choose individual options as opposed to pre-packaged deals. Basically, you are not bound by packages that include items you do not need or want. After all, there is no one size fits all in recognizing and honoring deceased loved ones. There are instances though when a local or state law precludes certain things addressed with the funeral rule. In addition, West Virginia funeral homes may require certain services such as embalming when a public visitation or wake is scheduled. Funeral providers feel that embalming may buy you a little time should the paperwork and other planning take a little longer than planned.
Funeral Homes in West Virginia Issue a Final Statement before Starting
The Funeral Rule suggests that you do not sign anything until you peruse the Statement of Funeral Goods and Services. West Virginia funeral homes provide this to you once you have selected the goods and services required to arrange the funeral or memorial to commemorate your departed loved one. This is the best opportunity for you to ensure everything you requested will be accomplished by the funeral director and staff.
Funeral homes in West Virginia also must include a written statement that addresses any fundamental charges which might include basic consulting and overhead expenses. There are certain incorporated fees that cannot be declined by you when you go over the Statement of Funeral Goods and Services. These notable items are explained during the planning process.
One thing that is not included or addressed in most required price lists and statements per the Funeral Rules is the payment or fee schedule. West Virginia funeral homes work with each customer individually to set a method of payment as well as the timing of the payments. Of course, if there are any insurance or government benefits that might go towards the fee, this information is also discussed. Funeral homes of West Virginia can create distinct payment plans per their discretion.
Rest assured that you, as the consumer, have rights in the funeral planning process. West Virginia funeral homes comply with the Funeral Rule and do their best to create an individualized funeral plan that best suits your vision of a meaningful funeral.