What is Prearrangement?
Today, many people are choosing to make funeral arrangements for themselves or a relative or friend prior to death, in conjunction with a funeral director. While not a requirement, most prearranged funerals are also prepaid. Doing so means the family will not have to make important decisions or secure funds in a time of extreme stress - and that the funeral reflects the wishes of the deceased.
What Are The Benefits Of Preplanning?
There are three major Benefits to planning your arrangements in advance.
- Preplanning ensures that all of your final wishes will be fulfilled. Because death is a difficult subject to discuss, often times your true wishes may not be known or fully understood by your family
- Preplanning can eliminate the financial burden that a funeral might pose on your survivors. And by prepaying, your funeral will cost less now than it would in the future.
- Preplanning provides you and your family with the peace-of-mind in knowing that everything has been "taken care of" in the manner you specified. It's the best gift you can leave your loved ones.
It is estimated that about 21 million Americans age 50 and over have prepaid some or all of their funeral and/or burial expenses. Such arrangements are commonly referred to as "preneed funeral arrangements" or "prefunded funeral arrangements." Through these arrangements, people are able to decide in advance what type of funeral they will have, prepay the funeral and hopefully eliminate some of the stress for family and friends at the time of death.
How Prefunding Works
In New Jersey there are three ways to prepay or prefund a funeral:
PreFunding - How Does It Work
- Establish a prepaid funeral trust fund account. This can be done using the New Jersey Prepaid Funeral Trust Fund.
- Assign existing life insurance policy or policies to the funeral home.
This can be done through Sure Trust.
- Purchase funeral insurance or an annuity.
(The NJSFDA has no programs that use this option.)
You can prepay a funeral using all of the above ways or any combination of them. We have provided an online form to begin the pre-planning process, now.
Our funeral home offers prefunding through the New Jersey Prepaid Funeral Trust Fund.
Only funeral directors who are members in good standing of the New Jersey State Funeral Directors Association may open a New Jersey Prepaid Funeral Trust Fund account for you.
The interest received by the Trust Fund will vary with money market rates, and the Trustees will only place those funds into FDIC insured bank deposits.
- You can meet with one of our funeral directors, select the funeral goods and services you desire, and complete trust fund paperwork.
- We will then forward the completed paperwork, along with your check to the Trust Fund.
- The check is immediately deposited and an acknowledgement of receipt is forwarded to you the following business day. If you do not receive an acknowledgement within two weeks, contact Funeral Planning CHOICES (in NJ: 1-800-286-3628; outside NJ: 1-732-449-4003).
- By January 31 of each year, the Trust Fund will send you an annual summary statement of your account's principal and interest earned, together with the Internal Revenue Service-required Grantor Letter for tax reporting.
An advantage of using the New Jersey Prepaid Funeral Trust Fund is that it is immediately available upon death for payment of funeral expenses. Unlike traditional savings accounts which may close or become inaccessible at the time of death, this account becomes payable.
Opening a New Jersey Prepaid Funeral Trust Fund account offers these important benefits:
- moneys are totally revocable (refundable). However to qualify for SSI, Medicaid, or General Assistance you may require an irrevocable account. For more details see Refundability.
- it grows from the day of deposit and is FDIC insured
- its rates are competitive and its payment options flexible
- there is NO age limit and NO health questions are asked
It is available for SSI, Medicaid and General Assistance applicants and meets all SSI/Medicaid and General Assistance requirements. Trust accounts for SSI/Medicaid recipients are irrevocable.
Just call us to set up an appointment or you may fill out our on-line form to begin the process.