I can give you an easy "how to" answer for the title of this post. Ready? Be informed. Know the facts.
Here is what I mean. I am not saying that every funeral providers is unethical in there practice of planning and sells, but what I am saying is that knowledge is the best defense to acting on emotion or intimidation. There are local and federal rules that govern burial. Even if you do not pay for prearrangement, it is prudent to know the rules and laws ahead of the need to bury a love one or for preplanning.
For instance... are you aware that outer containers are not required by state laws and are only required by some private cemetery owners? Federal rules require providers to offer you a price list with the various price options for their services. It is federally illegal for a provider to claim that there is any process that will keep a body for decomposition. Burial providers can not refuse a burial container obtained for another source. I could go on and on with the many misconceptions or lies told or believed by consumers. Here are some sources and alternatives to make you a better informed buyer of that one thing we can not avoid...the disposition of your body, a family member or friend.
The FEDERAL TRADE COMISSION provides federal rules that govern burial providers and consumer's rights in regards to funerals.
For several decades, NATIVE CASKETS located in Colorado, has been offering natural wood crafted caskets, coffins and urns as a burial option.
CASKET BUILDER SUPPLY offers DIY wood coffin and casket kits well suited for home funeral arrangements with various add-on options.
With chapters across the country, The FUNERAL CONSUMERS ALLIANCE provides valuable federal information and local chapter links.
The HOME FUNERAL ALLIANCE provides valuable information for home funeral options.
During a disaster, FEMA has provide certain assistance programs. As the Covid pandemic has been a national disaster, we are in such a time. The December 2020 Covid relief package included $2 billion to reimburse families for Covid related funerals/burials held during 2020. This payment would not include expenses pay by other programs. At the present time, FEMA has stalled the program while working to avoid fraud and obtain correct death data. The CDC and P can not verify cause of death from the data provided to the federal government and will need to rely on state data. Furthermore, if an individual died with Covid, the death certificate may state another related cause of death; fore instance pneumonia. This leave Covid as a secondary cause. The program is bound to be messy and deny some families due to state record keeping and documentation.
For more information...
UPDATE LINK.... Applications started April 12, 2021