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Preplanning a Funeral Without Prepaying

Preplanning a Funeral Without Prepaying

You probably have heard about pre-planning for a funeral.  Preplanning has many benefits. Preplanning your funeral helps to take the pressure off of your survivors. They won’t need to make decisions they may not know the answers to.

There are different levels of preplanning a funeral. You can plan just the basics such as choosing a traditional burial or cremation.  You can go as far as to plan every detail of your funeral including the music that is played and what verses or quotations are read. When you preplan it takes the burden off your family and friends. They will be in a state of grief and anything to ease their mourning will be helpful.


A Misconception of Preplanning a Funeral

Some of the misconceptions about preplanning is that you must prepay at the time of preplanning. Some may hesitate to go forward with the preplanning because they are not prepared to pay for it.  While you can certainly prepay for your funeral, it is not the only option. There are multiple ways to move forward with preplanning a funeral.


Choosing to Prepay and Preplan

Insurance companies can offer burial insurance along with a variety of life insurance policies.  Another option is a regulated trust. With this option, you may sign a contract with a funeral home and pay for the funeral in one large payment or smaller payments over time. The money is placed in an “interest bearing” account and the director of the funeral home acts as the trustee of said account. When the time comes to money is then paid directly to the trustee of the account.

If you are considering prepaying for your funeral, one motivator to do so is the shelter your assets from Medicaid.  According to Funeral Consumers Alliance; “Money in irrevocable trust will be excluded from net assets when your eligibility to receive supplemental security income (SSI) or Medicaid benefits is determined.” Confirm with the funeral home that the plan you buy is a Medicaid exempt trust if you do follow through with this option.


You can certainly preplan and prepay at the same time. To do so would take a gigantic burden off of the survivors and allow them to space to honor you in the way that you desire as well as take the financial and time burden off of them during their time of mourning.  


Choosing to Preplan Only

If prepaying is not in the cards for you at the moment, there are great ways to preplan the details. The paperwork can be done. The decisions can be made. Your wishes will be recorded and can be fulfilled when the time comes. There will be no questioning of is this what you would have wanted. There will be no need for the stress to rise and arguments to ensue over who makes what decisions and if this is what you really wanted. The details will be taken care of. Everyone can rest assured that you will be honored in the way that you want and that the stress load will not be so high at such a time of grief and sadness.  


Whatever decision you make, whether it is preplanning or prepaying or both, let you family know that arrangements have been made. Your closest loves ones should be aware of the existence of your plans so that they can be carried out according to your wishes and that they can honor your legacy in the best way possible.

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