Tony Chan, owner of Can-Trust-Funeral Ltd., explains how to make this difficult time a little easier.
1. Take your time
“I always suggest not to meet with families right after a loved one has passed,” says Chan. “They are vulnerable and might miss information or be confused. Except for certain religious beliefs, we have to wait for 48 hours for the physician to provide the necessary documents in order to register the death. By law cremation cannot take place within 48 hours, so use this time to rest.”
2. Don’t feel obliged
It’s ok to meet a few different funeral homes before you select. “Phone first, ask for a price list and gauge how the employee makes you feel,” says Chan. “When you visit, take notes – I’ll provide you with a notepad so you can remember things.” If your loved one has a prearranged funeral plan it can generally be used at or transferred to any funeral home.
3. Know about the law
Before you make arrangements, be sure you have the legal right to do so – the executor is responsible for funeral arrangements and payment. You can buy a casket and any funeral goods or floral arrangements from any supplier, and it is not legal for suppliers to charge extra for this. If this happens, report providers to Consumer Protection BC.
4. Gather what you need
Chan will provide a list of things you need for a meeting with a funeral home. It includes government ID of the person who has passed, information for the obituary and clothing.
5. Don’t come alone
The initial meeting can be confusing. It’s good to have someone there to support you, ensure you’re clear about the information you’re giving and receiving, and prevent miscommunication.
6. Do things your way
There’s no ‘right’ thing to do. “You don’t need to have a sit-down event, you don’t need to have a eulogy. Sometimes these things are too overwhelming or they don’t reflect the wishes of the person who has passed,” says Chan. “Every funeral service is unique and personalized. You don’t have an obligation to meet guests’ expectations or do things the traditional way.”
Can-Trust-Funeral Ltd. is at #110-10791 No. 3 Rd, Richmond (corner of No. 3 Rd and Steveston Hwy). To find out more, visit the website, or call 604-376-7975 any time, day or night.