I have life insurance, so I have no interest in advanced funeral planning.
If your intentions are to utilize life insurance to pay for your eventual funeral expenses, there are still many benefits to planning ahead. Documenting your wishes in writing, with the help of a licensed funeral director, will ease the emotional decisions forced on surviving family members when a loved one passes. Furthermore, life insurance can be complicated and many people continue to pay for their premiums without actually knowing the full details of their policy. Groff Funeral Homes & Crematory employs a licensed insurance agent who will assist you in fully understanding your policy. He will provide you with unbiased, professional advice that will allow you to make educated decisions.
Life Insurance is the best way to pay for end of life expenses.
Life insurance is an adequate way to pay for funeral expenses but isn’t the best way. The main purpose of life insurance is income replacement and leaving an inheritance. Over time funeral prices will increase, while, in general, the death benefit of your life insurance will stay constant. The best way to fund your eventual funeral is through an irrevocable trust, which can be initiated at your local funeral home. Groff Funeral Homes & Crematory offers the opportunity to pay for your services in advance. Doing so, locks in certain portions of your funeral contract, guarantees monetary growth, protects cash assets from Medicaid, and allows your loved ones piece of mind. Furthermore, we offer many different payment plans to find a solution for every budget.
Paying for my funeral in advance seems like a wise financial decision. However, I’m 50 years old and my wishes may change over time.
Placing monies in an irrevocable funeral trust does not lock you in to a certain funeral home. The trust is completely transferrable to any funeral home in the United States. Additionally, you are entitled to freedom of choice, which allows you to change your funeral services or merchandise at any time. If an individual changes their service to a more economical option any additional funds remaining in the trust will be received by the family.
I already started a trust at my cemetery, so I don’t need information about advanced funeral planning.
Owning cemetery property or merchandise only addresses your final resting place. Your final arrangements include much more than that, such as what kind of celebration, service, or memorialization you want. A service planned in advance can include elements of your final arrangements, including songs or reading that are important to you. We can also incorporate your favorite hobby into a personalized service. Even if your wishes are simple, such as a direct cremation, you will still need the assistance of a funeral home. Meeting with your local cemetery is a great start, but that is only part of what is needed.
To plan all my wishes in advance, I would have to meet with a cemetery, funeral home, a marker company, and others. That is simply too overwhelming for me.
Over the years, the Groff Family has expanded the business to address all of our families’ needs. We have added a cemetery, pet loss services, gift gallery, and the most advanced cremation facility in northern Ohio. What does this mean for you? At Groff Funeral Homes & Crematory, you can plan ALL of your end of life wishes, in one meeting, with one of our experienced staff members. This unmatched convenience allows a seamless transition for all of your needs.
I find the topic of my death too difficult to discuss.
If you find talking about your death a difficult task, imagine how difficult it will be for your family at the time. The average time between one’s death and that individual’s services, is three days. A lot of decisions need to be made during that stressful period. If the deceased wishes were not made known through advanced planning, this already painful time may prove more challenging for your loved ones.
If my funeral home goes out of business, the money I gave them will be lost.
Our prepaid funds are required by law to be invested in insurance or trust by the State of Ohio; this means that the funeral home does not keep your money. These funds are also an acceptable asset when considering Medicaid guidelines.
But where exactly does the money go? In this day and age, it is important to “follow the money” and know where your funds are being invested. We have chosen Funeral Directors Life Insurance Company (FDLIC) as our prepaid insurance service provider. FDLIC is an insurance company rated A- “Excellent” by A.M. Best Company, a leading third-party insurance ratings provider. Much like Groff Funeral Homes & Crematory, FDLIC is a company that values integrity and transparency in all aspects of their business. In some circumstances, we may choose to place the funds in your local bank.
Medicaid only allows up to $1500.00 in cash assets so placing money in an irrevocable trust would put me over the limit.
The above statement is only partially correct. Medicaid does require individuals to have $1500.00 or less in cash assets to remain eligible. The reduction of assets to meet Medicaid guidelines is called a “Medicaid spend down.” During a spend down, many families found themselves purchasing unnecessary items. A necessary item, often overlooked, are funeral and burial expenses. Placing monies in an irrevocable funeral trust, initiated by your local funeral home, DOES NOT count toward your allotted $1500.00. These monies will accrue interest and remain in the trust until the time of need. Once an individual passes, the funds are released and are utilized for his or her funeral.
Medicaid also allows funds to be placed in a separate irrevocable funeral trust for each family member, not just the Medicaid applicant. This allowance is very helpful when a family has a significant amount of cash to liquidate. Have more questions about Medicaid? Our staff is very educated and eager to assist you. Please contact us today.
After planning and funding my wishes in advance, is there anything else I should do?
The most important thing is to be an active consumer. Ensure that everyone in your family is aware of your arrangements, and whether or not they are pre-funded. Communicating with your loved ones prevents potential issues in the future. Next, periodically contact your local funeral home to update obituary information and check on the growth of your trust. Groff Funeral Homes & Crematory, and FDLIC, efficiently communicate to provide our families with the most up to date information on your trust. It is also important to contact your local cemetery about your trust and stay updated on all other insurance policies. Lastly, enjoy the fact that everything is in order. Advanced funeral planning replaces years of stressful worrying with ultimate peace of mind. Many surviving family members tell us that advanced funeral planning was the greatest gift received from their deceased loved one.
In conclusion, there is no reason not to plan ahead. A great deal of people choose to realize the benefits of funding their wishes in advance. Even those who do not fund still provide their loved ones with a wonderful gift by documenting their wishes.
Interested in more information?
Kyle P. Brubaker
Certified Pre-Planning Consultant and Licensed Insurance Agent
Kara Groff Mesenburg
Executive Director & Licensed Funeral Director
Begin filling out the Online Pre-Planning Form