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Funeral Consumers Alliance Asks Federal Government to Protect the Grieving From Funeral Fraud


South Burlington, VT—The nation’s consumer watchdog protecting grieving families has asked the Federal Trade Commission to beef up protections for those arranging funerals.

Funeral Consumers Alliance has responded to the FTC’s request for comments on the “Funeral Rule” to request that the FTC:

—Require funeral homes to post their complete price lists on their websites

—Require funeral homes to disclose the true and complete cost of their cremation services

—Clarify and rewrite consumer disclosures that let families know they may decline embalming, that they have the right to purchase simple, non-ceremonial services, and more.

“Funerals can be one of the most emotionally and financially costly purchases a family will ever make, but shopping around has been made difficult or impossible by an industry that refuses to voluntarily disclose its prices online like nearly ever other retailer does,” said FCA executive director Josh Slocum. “We’re asking the FTC to bring the Funeral Rule into the 21st century by mandating that funeral homes post their prices online.”

The Funeral Rule, effective since 1984, gives consumers the right to telephone price quotes, and the right to a paper price list when they show up in person. Few families, especially those in grief, have the time to travel to four or five funeral homes to get prices when they have a deceased loved one in need of timely arrangements.

Studies by FCA and its partner, the Consumer Federation of America, have found that fewer than 25 percent of funeral homes post their prices on their websites.

“The funeral industry resisted price transparency when it was mandated on paper, and our surveys show that they won’t post prices online voluntarily, so we’re asking the FTC to compel America’s funeral homes to do the right thing,” Slocum said. “Every family has the right to know what a funeral is going to cost before they commit to the most expensive purchase they’re likely to make for years.

The FTC has asked the public for comments on proposals to update the Funeral Rule. The agency will accept comments until January 3, 2023 at this location:

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