People choose cremation for a variety of different reasons; some feel it’s an eloquent, simple tribute to their loved one, and others may be following religious practices and beliefs. Whatever your reason, we’d like you to know that cremation is something we specialize in at Rose Family.
WHY CHOOSE CREMATION?
Any decision regarding the disposition of a loved one is deeply personal. Some feel that cremation is a natural way to honor a loved one. Some have environmental, land use, or religious reasons for the decision. Others say they are seeking to minimize cost, and to make end-of-life details easier to handle for themselves and their families. Others are attracted to the flexibility created by cremation, especially when it comes to the scattering of those remains.
HOW DOES THE COST OF CREMATION COMPARE WITH BURIAL?
In recent years, the average cost of a cremation has been substantially less then the cost of our least expensive burial service. As with a traditional funeral and burial, it is important to note that the overall cost of cremation can vary dramatically. Choosing to have a service, viewing, and/or burial of the cremated remains at a cemetery will all add cost to the overall service. Choosing to scatter at sea or over land, the type of urn, style of ceremony, type of memorial, and so on, will all cause the costs to fluctuate, however we generally find that our most expensive cremation services are still less expensive than the average burial service.
DOES CREMATION CONFLICT WITH RELIGIOUS TEACHINGS?
There is a great difference of attitude about cremation among religions. Some discourage or prohibit cremation, while others require it. Most, however, leave the choice to the individual or family. If religious issues are of concern to you, we would advise you to consult with your clergy to get up-to-date information and recommendations.
DOES CREMATION REQUIRE EMBALMING?
No, but embalming is highly encouraged when arrangements include a ceremony with a viewing.
IS A CASKET REQUIRED FOR CREMATION?
No, caskets are optional for cremation, although there is a legal requirement for some sort of rigid, combustible container. There are a wide selection of caskets and other containers that are designed specifically for cremation. The choice of casket or container used is a personal matter that is usually decided by the family, but at the bare minimum, a cardboard cremation container will be provided by us for the cremation process.
WHAT IS THE CREMATION PROCESS?
Cremation reduces the body to its essential elements through a process that exposes it to open flames, intense heat, and evaporation. This takes place in a specially designed furnace called a cremation chamber or retort. Our crematory requires a container for the body, such as a cremation casket or a rigid cardboard container.
Cremated remains are commonly referred to as “ashes,” however, in reality, they consist primarily of bone fragments. It is important to recognize that the body’s cremated remains are commingled with any remains of the container and any other incidental by-products of the incineration. Cremation produces 3 to 9 pounds of remains, though the exact amount depends on the size of the body.
After cremation, a special processor grinds the fragments into what we call cremated remains or “cremains.” This is what we mean when we refer to ashes. After grinding, the ashes are placed in a plastic bag. The bag is placed in the urn that the family provides or in a temporary container. The urn or container is then returned to the family.
IS IT POSSIBLE TO HAVE A FUNERAL SERVICE IF I CHOOSE CREMATION?
Cremation in no way limits your choices regarding viewings or funeral services. Cremation may follow a traditional service in the funeral home, chapel, or in your own church, with visitation and viewing of the deceased in the casket. This may be followed by a witness cremation at the crematory, or the services may conclude at the church or funeral home. Another option is to have a memorial service in a funeral home, church, lodge hall, personal home, or other suitable area. The body is usually not present at a memorial service, but the cremated remains may or may not be. Other options may include no formal funeral or memorial service, but rather a gathering of friends and family and a time of sharing and remembering. Sometimes, the family may choose to have no gathering at all.
HOW SOON WILL CREMATION TAKE PLACE?
Our goal is to complete every cremation in 7 to 14 working days (Monday – Friday) from the date of passing, however these times vary and are not guaranteed please call for a more accurate estimate.. We make no guarantees for the length of the process. All cremations are expected to be ready to take place within 14-21 business days from the time of passing. The length of the process is subject to the following happening in a timely manner:
- We must communicate with your family and complete the required documents to be filed with the state.
- Your loved one must be released from the hospital, coroner, nursing home, etc. and have come into our care.
- The doctor in charge of the certificate submits causes of death to us within a working day or two. These causes must be approved by the State of California Department of Public Health before we can proceed.
- When the causes have been approved by the state, we must submit an attestation for the doctor to sign.
- Once the doctor has signed the death certificate, we submit the entire document to the state electronically.
- Once fully approved, the death certificate is filed and the cremation is scheduled.
WHAT ARE SOME COMMON SETBACKS THAT DELAY CREMATION?
- The decedent wasn't seeing a doctor or had not seen a doctor for some time.
- The decedent's death was related to some kind of accident or was an unanticipated/unlikely demise.
- The signing doctor is a hospitalist, as they will be harder to pin down at any given time.
- The family is missing information on the necessary forms (i.e. the social security number, mother's maiden name, and states of birth for the decedent and/or their parents)
- There are family members who would like to view the deceased ahead of cremation.
- The decedent is a organ or tissue donor.
HOW SOON WILL I RECEIVE THE CERTIFIED COPIES OF THE DEATH CERTIFICATE?
Once the death certificate has been filed with the State of California, we have permission to order death certificates. They are ordered electronically daily, and can take anywhere from 3-10 business days to arrive from the County Health Department. Some counties are more prompt than others. Death certificates will not be ordered until all funeral home payments have been made.
Please speak to your funeral director about options if you need them sooner.