When a death occurs

When a death occurs, the order in which things need to be done often depends on where the death occurred. If in any case you are not sure of who to notify or what to do, we’ll assist you in notifying the proper agencies. Once everything has been cleared with the proper authorities, we will gather some basic information and transport your loved one into our care.
When a death occurs in a care facility, such as a hospital or nursing home, the professional staff will notify you and the necessary authorities. If the name of the funeral home has been left with them, the institution will notify the funeral home at the time of the death. The funeral director will contact you immediately following their notification to help you proceed. (However, we suggest you contact the funeral home immediately, so you've got the reassurance you need that all is taken care of properly.)
A hospice representative will give family members instructions and procedures to follow. The coroner/medical examiner will be notified by hospice. Following their release the hospice will contact the funeral home. It is always a good idea for the family to contact us immediately so that we will be aware of the pending call from hospice.
A family member or co-worker should contact emergency personnel and the person's physician if he or she was under a doctor's care. If the death occurs at home with family or friends present, and the person is under a physician's care, the family will want to call us directly. However, if the death occurs in a residence and no one is there at the time of death, the police will need to be notified and respond to the residence before the deceased is removed from their home.

If you are not sure of who to notify or what to do, you may call (781) 284-3376, and we'll assist you in notifying the proper agencies.

You should meet with a funeral director within 24 hours of a death to begin making final arrangements for your loved one.  Deciding on these arrangements may seem like a very daunting task, especially when you are in a heightened emotional state. Do not worry: our staff has years of experience, and will strive to ensure everything goes as smoothly as possible. We will need to gather information about your loved one in order to obtain a death certificate and the necessary permits. In the event pre-planning was not done, you will also select a casket or urn and schedule the funeral or memorial service.  The funeral director will also help you notify Social Security and the insurance company of the deceased.  Funeral directors are here to help you and advise you.
Any Vital Information which has not already been provided on the Arrangement Form. This interactive PDF can also be found here.

A photo of your loved one (Digital photo is great too). Clothing for a visitation or wake service. Information for the Obituary.

Funeral Etiquette

Sometimes we are at a loss for words when encountering something as final as death. Simply saying "I'm sorry for your loss" is usually enough. If you knew the deceased personally, you could share a fond memory of them. Be respectful and listen attentively when spoken to, and offer your own words of condolence.
Business attire is usually a safe bet when attire is not specified. However, sometimes the deceased has specified the dress code; 'no black' is a common request. If you can't learn the wishes of the family, then dress conservatively, and avoid bright colors.
Don't be afraid to laugh. Remembering their loved one fondly can mean sharing a funny story or two. Just be mindful of the time and place; if others are sharing, then you may do so too. There is simply no good reason you shouldn't talk about the deceased in a happy, positive tone. Avoid assumptive statements like "She's in a better place," or "The pain will lessen in time." Don't tell the bereaved you know how they feel, ask how the person died, or question their medical care.

Sympathy cards and food are a good start. Before sending flowers to the funeral home, be sure to check because sometimes families request "no flowers."

Whether it's flowers, a donation to a charity, or a commitment of service to the family at a later date, as always, "it's the thought that counts." Always make sure to provide the family with a signed card, so they know what gift was given, and by whom.

If the deceased was a close relative or friend, it's a good idea to invite them to share in the experience. Plan to prepare them ahead of time if possible. If children become restless or fussy, don't be afraid to make a quick exit to avoid disturbing the service.

Don't feel that you have to stay. If you make a visit during calling hours there's no reason your stay has to be a lengthy one.

Don't feel you have to view the deceased if there is an open casket. Act according to what is comfortable to you.

No cell phones. Switch it off before entering the funeral home, or better yet, leave it in the car. It's inconsiderate to be on the phone (talking, messaging, or scrolling) during any funeral service.

Don't neglect to step into the receiving line. Simply say how sorry you are for their loss, introduce yourself, and how you knew the deceased.

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Funeral Pricing

In 2021 for a full-service funeral, our client families chose to spend an average of $8,110. This includes all professional services, including transfer-of remains, embalming, and other preparation; use of viewing facilities and the facilities for the ceremony; hearse, limousine, and the purchase of a casket. This price does not include outside charges; church, cemetery, newspaper, flowers, Etc..
In some respects, funerals are a lot like weddings or birthday celebrations. The type and cost will vary according to the tastes and budget of the consumer. Not only that, a funeral home is a 24-hour, labor-intensive business, with extensive facilities (viewing rooms, chapels, limousines, hearses, etc.), these expenses must be factored into the cost of a funeral. Moreover, the cost of a funeral includes not only merchandise, like caskets, but the services of a funeral director in making arrangements; filing appropriate forms; dealing with doctors, ministers, florists, newspapers and others; and seeing to all the necessary details. Contrary to popular belief, funeral homes are largely family-owned with a modest profit margin.
While most funeral homes provide outstanding services, sometimes things can go wrong. Funeral service is regulated by the Federal Trade Commission and state licensing boards. In most cases, the consumer should discuss problems with the funeral director first. If the dispute cannot be solved by talking with the funeral director, the consumer may wish to contact the FTC by contacting the Consumer Response Center by phone, toll-free, at 1-877-FTC-HELP (382-4357); TDD: 1-866-653-4261; by mail: Consumer Response Center, Federal Trade Commission, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20580; or on the Internet at www.ftc.gov, using the online complaint form. You may also choose to contact the local Better Business Bureau or your state consumer protection office.