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Does anyone know? Cremation/burial question

If someone dies and they have no money to pay for their funeral,and their family refuses or is unable to pay,what happens to the body? Will a funeral home bill the family for it? Is there a fund that pays in cases like this?
My Grandma is in her final days,possibly weeks,and the family is fighting over who should have to pay. We are not in the position to be able to pay for it. We can contribute,but cannot come up with thousands of dollars.She has 11 children,and 27 grandchildren,so if everyone gave some,it could get paid,but most are refusing to pay one cent! I don't want to see her sitting in a freezer while everyone fights!


Asked by butterflyblue19 at 6:40 PM on Aug. 10, 2010 in Relationships

Level 50 (383,297 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (16)
  • The obligation is for her children if she does not have insurance, yes you can help but that falls on her children.

    Answer by MTM at 6:52 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • Social Security pays a one time death benefit payment of $255 to assist with expenses. (My husband died only recently)

    If there truly is no money, most states will bury in an unmarked grave in a pauper's cemetery. (someone in the family may want to step in and pay for cremation to avoid this, cremation is less expensive than burial)

    How truly sad that in Grandma's final days, the family is fighting over money.

    Answer by Gaccck at 7:17 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • Maybe you could call a local Funeral Home and ask a general question and say it's regarding a friend. They will have the answer for you.

    Answer by ILovemyPaulie at 6:57 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • Sorry no one can agree to just pony up money to lay Grandma to rest. That sucks. You mentioned cremation in your title...are you all open to that, or is your grandma? If I'm not mistaken, cremation is a whole lot less expensive than burial, so if she doesn't mind that, it's a very good option to consider. I hope your family can get this worked out peaceably, as soon as possible, and I hope Grandma doesn't have to hear about it from anyone so she is spared that kind of drama in her last days.

    Answer by vicesix at 7:14 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • They give 600 to her family to go to final expenses thru social security. If the family is unwilling or unable to pay for burial the state will keep the money and bury her in a paupers cemetary. At least that's what my family was told when they asked. Check with her case worker every state might be different. Good luck.

    Answer by zadesmom1998 at 7:09 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • All I can say is next of kin is responsible for her expenses unless she has some assets then it will come out of that. It is not cheap either. My brothers funeral had to be paid for by his wife. They were separated and it was expensive. All of my siblings and parents gave her some cash. It helped her some what. Still rough to have people fighting over this instead of dealing with the issue at hand they are loosing their mother.

    Answer by mmmegan38 at 8:52 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • Her final expenses will come out of her estate. Either the person she appointed as executor will take care of liquidating her assets, or if she has no will, then the state comes in and does an audit of all of her money and possessions and takes the money out of that.

    Answer by Bmat at 6:44 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • She doesn't have an estate. She's on Social Security and has no assets.She has nothing of value.

    Comment by butterflyblue19 (original poster) at 6:46 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • she also won't sit in a freezer until its paid for, either. the funeral home would be billing someone for 'kenneling', for lack of a proper term.

    Answer by dullscissors at 6:46 PM on Aug. 10, 2010

  • Call several funeral homes, explain your grandma's situation, and ask for advise. Don't elaborate how many family members there are. Just ask for advice. Call several. I believe the cheapest way to go is cremation.

    Also I have been told that you can donate a body to research at some medical schools and the body will be buried at no charge. You could call some schools. I do not know this for sure. Best wishes.

    Answer by elizabr at 7:24 PM on Aug. 10, 2010