Facts vs Myths


This information can help those overwhelmed by the decisions to be made following a death. Following is a link to our popular brochure. What Do I Do Now

The average total cost of a traditional funeral in the United States (including open-casket service followed by an earth burial) ranges from $12,000 to $15,000. This varies from state to state and depends heavily on the type of funeral a family chooses.

  • In most cases, it is up to the next of kin to decide whether the body should be embalmed.
  • Funeral homes are required by Federal Trade Commission regulations to provide a written general price list to consumers upon request and at the beginning of a funeral planning session.
  • The number of people who opt for cremation is rising every year. The cremation rate in the United States currently stands at about 40 percent.  In Canada, the rate is 56 percent. By comparison, the cremation rate is 72 percent in the United Kingdom and 98 percent in Japan, according the Cremation Association of North America.
  • Cremation can follow an open-casket service or any type of service, but timing may mandate embalming.
  • By planning and communicating your end-of-life wishes, you can reduce the amount of stress, confusion, and expense your survivors incur.
  • Funeral homes and funeral directors will have their own interests in your purchases and might not lead you to the best values.
  • Our consumer-oriented organization encourages individuals to plan ahead, but not necessarily to pay ahead.  Carefully consider your situation, weigh your options, and learn about state laws before buying a “pre-need” funeral or burial plan.
  • The most important thing to remember is that the cost of the funeral is not related to how much you cared for or respected the deceased. You should not deal with anyone who tries to guilt you into overspending in this way.
  • Speakers from Funeral Consumers Alliance of Greater Kansas City are available to present interesting and detailed information to your club, church group or organization by e-mailing or phoning us:

    E-mail address: fca.gkc@gmail.com

    Mailing address:
    Funeral Consumers Alliance
    PO Box 7021
    Kansas City, MO  64113

    Phone: (816) 561-6322


Embalming is not required by law.

Embalming does not protect the public health.

Protective caskets do not preserve the body.

Vaults are not required by law.

Vaults are not required for the interment of cremated remains.

Cremated remains are not required to be placed in an urn or interred in a cemetery lot or niche.

It is generally not a good idea to prepay for a funeral, locking in prices with a pre-need contract.

Insurance is generally not a good way to pay for a funeral.

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