Basics of Funeral Planning

Planning funerals at funeral homes in Clinton Township, MI is something that people deal with when their loved ones passed away. You may be having a hard time planning a funeral for your loved one and not sure how to start.

Here are some basics that will help you.

Before you go to the funeral home, check your loved one’s important papers to see if they preplanned their funeral with the funeral home or to see if they left written instructions that detailed the kind of funeral they wanted.

Doing this can save you a lot of time and legwork because if your loved one has prearranged their funeral with the funeral home or they have left written funeral instructions, then most of the hard work of planning a funeral has already been done.

You will usually go to the funeral home within 24 hours after your loved one’s death. The right funeral home will let you know when you should be there to meet with the funeral director to make the arrangements for your loved one’s funerals.

This meeting is a critical part of the funeral planning process, as everything pertaining to your loved one’s funeral will be addressed. Therefore, there are a few documents that you should bring with you, as well as some other items.

The documents you will need to bring are your loved ones:

  • Birth certificate
  • Social Security card
  • Marriage certificate
  • Divorce decree (if applicable)

If your loved one was a military veteran and you want burial in a national or state cemetery and/or military funeral honors as part of their funeral, then you should bring their military discharge papers (Form DD-214), so the funeral director can make a copy of them.

The funeral director will work with the local Department of Veterans Affairs to coordinate all military-related funeral services.

You will also need to take the clothes that your loved ones will be wearing when they are buried or cremated to the funeral home when you meet with the funeral director. You will not need to bring shoes, since they are not needed for either a cremation or a burial. If you are having a viewing for your loved one, their feet will be covered by the casket lid.

At this meeting with the funeral director, you will also either bring an obituary you or your loved one has written, or you will provide the information you want to be included in your loved one’s obituary to the funeral director. If you want a picture of your loved one included in the obituary, you should also bring that with you.

The meeting with the funeral director will cover any service details for your loved one. The funeral director can give you guidance on the typical format of funeral services and memorial services. However, you are free to customize any part of the service to your specifications or to your loved one’s wishes.

One of the things you will decide about the service is who will participate in it. If your loved one specified people they wanted to be a part of the service, then you should notify them to make sure they are willing and available. If they did not, then you can choose and notify the people you have chosen.

If your loved one is being cremated, you will be able to choose the urn that you want their cremation remains placed in. If a loved one is being buried, you can specify which cemetery they should be buried in. The funeral director will handle all the details.

For more information about funeral planning at funeral homes in Clinton Township, MI – our compassionate and experienced funeral staff at Lee-Ellena Funeral Home can help.