Regulations

Attorneys general call for enhanced consumer protection

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As you may well know, the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) “Funeral Rule” is up for review at this time.  The FTC has also extended the deadline for interested parties to submit comments to the agency to June 15, 2020, from the original April 14, 2020 date.

The FTC Funeral Rule was first enacted in 1982 and follows the FTC’s guidelines to promote competition, and protect and educate consumers.  According to this article from the Daily Independent of Peoria, Arizona, “The FTC is reviewing the relevance and effectivenesss of its 1982 rule, which regulates funeral homes. . . . the rule has not been updated since 1994.

According to the same article, Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich recently joined a group of 22 other state attorneys general in asking the FTC to “enhance consumer protections around funeral home services.”

In a letter to the FTC, these attorneys general urge the FTC to strengthen protections for consumers by requiring funeral providers to:

  1. Publicize itemized price lists online
  2. Disclose the average cost of funeral services on its online price list
  3. Provide consumers electronic copies of price lists before they select services
  4. Standardize the format for price lists and other disclosures
  5. Provide receipts for services paid to third parties and repay any funds in excess of final costs
  6. Protect pre-need funeral payments
  7. Disclose embalming requirements

To get more detail on the attorneys general issues with each item listed, you can read the article from the Daily Independent here.

Related — A past article pertaining to  on-line pricing from Funeral Director Daily can be found here.

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