Why Your Will is Not the Right Place for Your Funeral and Burial Instructions

How should I communicate my wishes about my funeral and burial to my family?

Many people have very specific wishes about what they want their funeral to be like and what they want to happen to their body after they die. A very common misconception is that those wishes should be included in your will.

Putting your funeral plans and burial wishes in your will almost guarantees they will not be followed. Family members often do not look at the will until after the deceased has been buried. Sometimes wills are not easily found. Access might be difficult because the deceased kept the will at the bank in a safety deposit box (unless you share access to the lock box, this is not a good place for your will). 

So, if you have specific plans for your funeral and remains, what should you do? First and foremost, talk to your loved ones about what your wishes are. This is often an uncomfortable conversation to have, but it is an important one. Telling your family what you want to happen will help them. Second, you should put your wishes into writing. This reduces the chance that your desires will be ignored, misremembered or forgotten completely. We recommend that you then store this document in a secure, yet easily accessible, location where you have told your loved ones it can be found.

Posted in Estate Planning

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