What happens with my loved one immediately after they pass away?
Your very first thought is usually: "What do I do, & who do I call?"
CALL US: on 0428 766 580 any time 24/7.
( a pen and paper will be handy for you at this time, as you may not remember our conversation ).
We will guide you all the way, that is all you need to do at this point.
We will be there to help you every step of the way, and we liaise with nursing staff or doctors for your family.
This is a terribly confronting and upsetting time for you and can be quite scary, but it is one simple phone call to us. Once we have established the doctor has certified the death, we will be there to take your loved one into our care as painlessly as possible at a very difficult time for you. Sometimes certifying the death may take a bit of time depending on the circumstance, day, and location of the person. If this is the case, as soon as we are allowed and certificates confirmed by the staff at the hospital, nursing home or other location, we will be there to transfer as quickly as possible. We will advise you what is happening the entire time.
This is the most important part of the funeral process at this point, to start with, before any other arrangements will be made. The care and appropriate environment for your loved one is of utmost importance. Our caring staff will come to the location of your loved one usually within a couple hours after confirmation, and it is your choice if you want to be present or not. In many cases, you may not be there, which is totally fine. We will transfer your loved one in the same dignified manner. Either way; there are a few immediate questions we will need to ask at the first call from you, to establish what other certificates we need and to make sure all details are correct before we begin the transfer process ( such as birth date, the correct spelling of names, address etc ). Don't worry, once again we take care of this.
Our Funeral Director will contact you either the following morning or later that day, after you have had a chance to gather your thoughts, family, and questions; but now in the knowledge, your loved one is securely held until the funeral date.
*If your loved one is held at the Coroner's or has passed away interstate or overseas, we will walk you through this.
Can we have our favourite music, photos, butterflies, hotrod, dancing, the family pet, musicians, food truck, a party or drinks & just about anything?
As this is a celebration of the Life of your loved one, you are welcome and encouraged to have as much or as little as you want at the funeral or memorial. If you want the family's special pet there, we will make that happen. If you want cakes, sandwiches, or hot food or a mobile pizza-guy there, we will make this happen. If you want a country-style hoedown with hay bales, we can do this, If you want bagpipes, a singer, guitarist or other musicians there, we will make this happen. You can also have DVD presentations with favourite music choices. Supergirl or The Wiggles officiating, rainbow flags flying high, customised coffin with literally any pictures, photos or design; we can do this, the local footy oval or club, an all-ladies funeral service, the treasured motorbike, hotrod, or classic car at the service, or honoured military-service medals & items at the service. If it is within my capability, and restrictions allowed at the location of choice, we will make it happen for you and your family's wishes. Many locations may not allow alcohol on their premises, or not insured or licensed to serve it. If it's important to you, we will find you a suitable location to serve or allow alcohol at the funeral.
What is a Pre-Paid vs a Pre-Arranged Funeral?
A Pre-Paid allows you to pay for your funeral now at today's costs. ( So if a funeral costs $8000 today and you pay for it now, the cost will be covered, with no more to pay, regardless of how many years go by. ) Let's say the time comes in another 10 years before you pass away. Predicted costs for the same funeral in 10 years' time can likely be somewhere around the $16,000 and upwards amount.
Your money is safe and held in a trust account ( by an approved investment manager set up for funeral payments ) and paid directly to the funeral director/home upon being invoiced. Your family never has to worry about the financial side of the funeral, and allows them to grieve without the stress this usually brings with it.
* The funeral director does not hold on to any money paid. It is invested on your behalf and only received after the death has occurred and the funeral has taken place, as per wishes and documented.
cbs.sa.gov.au Pre-paid funerals are governed by the Fair Trading Act 1987. You can read more about them in the Fair Trading (Pre-paid Funerals Industry Code of Practice) Regulations 2011
A Pre-Arranged or planned funeral is arranged now with all your wishes and preferences written in plain English, clearly for your family when the time comes; so there is no argument, misunderstandings, or upsets at the time of your funeral. It is paid for at the time of the funeral and at the current rate for that year. This allows you and your family the time to save up money, know upfront what to expect, know the likely costs, and have a full understanding of how much they will need to set aside for either a cremation, burial, or memorial service. This also allows them to grieve without worrying about what you may have wanted, and without any surprises. Everything is planned to your requests and needs, which also helps the family cope without the burden of disagreements or trying to guess what you may have wanted. The added benefit for your family is the savings you've set aside for the funeral, so they will not have to worry about trying to fund the funeral themselves, while grieving.
What if I don't know if it's a cremation or a burial my loved one wanted?
Don't worry. We will nut-out the details and some family history or events to find the appropriate solution for you. We only want to do what your loved one would have wanted. They may have written these instructions down possibly. They may have even noted this in their Advanced Care Directive if residing in a Nursing Home?
What if I only want a private cremation without a service?
Absolutely you can. There are many instances or family factors that may come into the decision to have a respectful and direct cremation without a funeral. There is also the opportunity to have a memorial with ashes present after the cremation. This can be done a week, month or year after, and is much cheaper than a funeral as well. You can goto the Prices page to view the costs and inclusions, or call me anytime on 0428 766 580.
How much is this going to cost me?
Depending on whether it's a burial, cremation, funeral service, memorial service, or direct cremation without a service; you will find all the relevant costs on my page titled "Prices". One thing I can tell you is that every single detail, expense, disbursement, or option will be spelled out in black and white, so you know exactly what everything will cost upfront. Another note to point out is that I keep costs right down, charge only what I get charged for items, don't mark-up crematorium or burial costs, and will never try 'selling' you something you don't need or want. You can have as much or as little as you want and will be in full control of the funeral at all times. At no time will you receive any 'surprises' tacked on to the final cost. You are my priority, not your pocket.
Do I have to have a priest or religious service?
No, in a nut-shell. A non-religious service is officiated by a celebrant, such as myself. You can have a service entirely non-denominational or as religious as you like. However: if you require a Priest, Pastor, Iman, Kohen, Pujari, Monk, Orthodox Presbyter, Father, Guru or Granthi, I am able to help you with this, but many communities have their own 'elder' or leader they prefer to use. I work in conjunction with the elder to perform the service you require.
Do I have to read out a eulogy if I don't want to?
Not at all. You may like to write something out to tell your story about your loved one, but I can read this on your behalf. You don't have to actually write anything if you would rather not. We will sit down together to talk about what to do and who will read at the service. There is usually someone who is comfortable to do this, we will work all these concerns out at the arrangement / meeting.
Do we pay for the funeral before or after the service?
A deposit is required to meet some immediate cemetery or crematorium costs, and the rest is paid one to two weeks after the service, upon the invoice given to the signatory/authority for the deceased. Depending on the service and if you're potentially experiencing some financial duress at the time, we will come to an arrangement that suits at the time. This is by bank transfer, bank cheque, cash, or a mix of any of the payment options.
How many people can come to the funeral or memorial?
As many as you like. You may prefer a private and intimate gathering of just your closest family and friends, or an open invitation to as many as you like. We do ask for a 'rough' idea of what you expect, but how long is a piece of string? Sometimes many turn up unexpected, and sometimes very few turn up when you may be expecting more. Either way, we will cater for any number, and find the appropriate locations for the numbers you think will attend.
What if I already have my loved one at another funeral home, and decide to bring them over to you to care for and officiate the funeral?
As the authority over your loved one, you may have your service at any funeral home or with any Director you choose. If your person has already been transferred to another home, you can have them sent to me, in the same manner they originally were transferred to the current home. There is usually some resistance and price matching, so you are able to make your decision then and sometimes can expect to upset another Director. But, remember, this is your decision and you are quite within your rights to change to any Funeral Director you want. There is a new transfer cost from the original funeral home, usually in the vicinity of $250 to $350 depending on the Home, that you will need to pay for up-front. So please be aware of the extra cost to change over.
Can I just have a chat with you without being obliged to go with you?
Absolutely. I am happy to guide anyone that needs help or understanding of the funeral process. Please feel free to contact me at any time to talk on 0428 766 580. There is absolutely no obligation at any time, and you will not feel pressured in any way at any time.
Funeral homes scare me. What do I do now?
Don't worry. You still won't need to walk into any funeral home. I can come to your home and arrange everything we need in the comfort of your own lounge room. You may also come to my private office, which is not located in a funeral home. If you need my help for another funeral service, I will find one that will accommodate you without the need to go to a funeral home at any time. Call me anytime on 0428 766 580.