This should never happen

Chalk this incident up to “This should never happen” but it did.  In this article from the Bucks County Courier Times of Pennsylvania we learn of the tale of Richard Geisinger who died in 2013.  The article tells the story of how Mr. Geisinger, who had pre-arrangements for a casketed burial, was instead cremated and left unclaimed in the county morgue for six years. How did this happen?  Even though he had paid for a casket, bronze plaque, mausoleum crypt, […]

Preneed Regulations

Guilty plea, restitution and no jail doesn’t go over well with some pre-need victims

According to this article from the Manistee News, a former funeral home manager has pleaded guilty to taking over $223,000 in pre-need funds.  The plea would assure the defendent, Mr. Denis Johnson, age 69, of Manistee, Michigan, that he would serve no jail time as long as restitution to the approximately 60-70 victims is completed within one year. At least one relative of a victim stated that she believed the plea bargain was too lenient of a sentence.  “I guess […]

Finance Preneed

Security National Financial acquires Kilpatrick Life Insurance

In a press release dated today out of Murray, Utah, we learned that the Security National Financial Corporation (SNFC) has closed on its purchase of the Kilpatrick Life Insurance Company domiciled in Louisiana.  Both companies operate to some degree in the pre-need funeral funding insurance market. You can read the press release as provided from Globe Newswire here. Scott M Quist, President of Security National is quoted in the press release, “We view this acquisition as strategic with regards to […]

Preneed Regulations

Illinois funeral director sentenced for preneed irregularities

We received a couple of articles out of Springfield, Illinois, today concerning a southern Illinois funeral director who has been sentenced to prison for his role in failing to deposit payments for preneed funeral services. You can read about the case in these articles from WGN Web and from KFVS 12.  According to the articles, in addition to a prison sentence a fine of $25,000 was also imposed as was restitution to the victims. Illinois State Comptroller Susan Mendoza is […]

Business Preneed

Social help in funeral costs

Virtually all funeral homes in the United States are profit driven.  I’m aware of one funeral home in Minnesota — in New Ulm — which is a cooperative community based funeral home.  You can see their web-site here. However, I’m guessing that over 99% of funeral homes in North America are profit driven enterprises.   Today, however, we are starting to see socially conscious not-for-profit death care establishments turn up in Australia and Scotland that may someday put a dent in […]


Preneed: Do you know your competitors?

I’ve been involved in the funeral business long enough to see the State of Minnesota move, in what I consider a more consumer friendly way, in respect to the business of preneed.  I can go back to the 1980’s when we were only allowed to put a consumer’s designated funeral funds into a bank guaranteed certificate of deposit. I’ve seen the preneed movement in our state then go to insurance sold by designated agents not affiliated with funeral homes to, […]

Business Cemetery Preneed

From the Veterans Day file

Yesterday was Veteran’s Day across the United States and we noticed a couple of funeral related items that we thought we would pass on to our readers. First of all, we noticed how Service Corporation International’ s Dignity Memorial location in Western Michigan received some really good attention on a television talk show about pre-planning options for veterans.  You can see the video here.  This is great publicity and public information. We just think it is great marketing by the […]

Finance Preneed

Assurant reports 3rd Quarter 2019

Assurant is a leading global provider of housing and lifestyle solutions that support, protect and connect major consumer purchases.  In relation to the death care industry they are a provider of pre-need or what they call “pre-funded funeral insurance”.  Assurant is a Fortune 500 company with a presence in 21 countries. They recently reported their 3rd Quarter results for 2019 and you can see them here.  In those results they reported $104.8 million of operating income of which $7.4 million […]


Funeral homes and the law

Every once in a while we hear stories of funeral homes being investigated for acts that would be contrary to the laws of their respective states.  This weekend we happened to notice two such articles in newspapers that dealt with funeral homes potentially running afoul of the preneed laws of their state. The first article deals with a cease and desist order for an Iowa funeral director and two funeral homes that had been under his jurisdiction.  This is an […]


United Kingdom insurer, DeadHappy, plans move to death care ideas

DeadHappy, the United Kingdoms technical insurance startup that recently received about US $ 5 million in Series A funding, announced in this  article from Techcrunch, that they hope to get more involved in the wishes of their insured, including making sure that your funeral is the way you want it. The company was founded in 2017 and claims to be the United Kingdom’s first fully digital pay-as you-go life insurance provider.  According to the Techcrunch article that means that their […]