What is a pre-arrangement?

A “pre-arrangement” is the process of planning ahead for what will eventually happen to all of us. It is going over the information and selections that will be needed later, when a death occurs. Many people do this when they set up estate planning or draft a will. Sometimes it is done because a person has been moved into a long-term care facility, or hospice. Other times it is done because a medical visit has resulted in a serious diagnosis.

Death is a difficult subject for many to confront, but it is equally difficult for grieving families to try to maneuver through arrangements when someone they love has die, especially if they never discussed what kind of services the deceased would want. Pre-planning can give everyone the opportunity to think about these decisions when their mind is not clouded by emotion.

Pre-planning is not difficult. It starts with some basic questions, such as:

  • Do I want to be cremated? Do I want to be buried?
  • Do I want to have a viewing or a service before the cremation or burial?
  • If I do not want a service before, do I want a memorial service after?
  • If I am cremated, what will be done with the cremated remains?

Once those questions are answered, then an appointment can be scheduled with the funeral director to continue the pre-arrangements. At the meeting, the director will go over information and selections will be made.

The director will ask what type of service best suits the person’s wishes. While dates and times cannot be selected, the decisions as to what casket, vault, urn, etc., can be addressed. The current costs of the selections can also be discussed.

If desired, an insurance policy, irrevocable account or funeral trust can be set up to pay for the selections made.

The director may also go over statistical information that would be used to complete the future paperwork, such as the death certificate.

All the information is kept on file for the future when it is needed.