What Should You Include in Your Funeral Instructions?
The instructions you leave for your final arrangements can be as detailed as you want them to be. You can plan and pay for your funeral well in advance of your death if you choose. Some people have a few special instructions and leave the rest up to the family. Others do not have any specific requests but designate an agent to be in charge of the arrangements.
Tell them who to call
Planning and paying for your funeral ahead of time is without a doubt the easiest scenario for your family. People who have been through the process of planning an unexpected funeral for a loved one are the ones most likely to plan their own funerals, but all the planning will be useless if your loved ones don't know you've made arrangements. Be sure to tell those closest to you who to call and where to find the instructions.
Be specific about what matters to you
Many people feel strongly about cremation or other methods of disposition of their remains. Whether your preferences are based on religious beliefs, family traditions or cultural norms, be specific about what you want or don't want and consider details such as:
- Do you prefer burial, cremation or above-ground interment?
- Do you want a traditional funeral in a funeral home or a small graveside service and maybe a memorial sometime later?
- Do you want a religious service?
- Are you a veteran entitled to military honors?
- Where do you want your funeral or other service to be?
- Do you have a preference for the type of casket used?
- Do you have favorite poems or scriptures you want read at your service?
- Are there certain songs you want played?
- Do you prefer flower or charitable donations to be made in your honor?
- Who do you want to speak at your service?
- Do you want to leave a statement to be read to your loved ones?
- Do you have a preference for your gravestone or other marker?
Of course, you can also include other items not mentioned here, but answering these questions will get you off to a good start and make the planning process easier for your loved ones when the time comes.
Call for more information about estate planning and your final arrangements
Our experienced Bryan-College Station, Texas estate planning attorneys can provide the information and assistance you need to prepare a comprehensive estate plan today. Call Peterson Law Group at 979-703-7014 to make an appointment, or fill out our online contact form to request a meeting.