One of the most caring, loving things you can do for your family is to leave detailed information which permits them to make the funeral service a personal tribute in keeping with your wishes. Making funeral arrangements at the time of loss is extremely difficult for those left behind. When the funeral arrangements are made in advance and most of the decisions have been made, it spares those surviving any confusion and uncertainty at a time when emotional stress may make decisions difficult.
Many New York residents prearrange and prefund their funerals as part of regular estate planning. In fact, many consumer advocates applaud the concept. Reasons for preplanning one’s final expenses include peace of mind, relieving the burden on loved ones, or for purposes of SSI/Medicaid spend down. There are a number of advantages to preplanning and prefunding funeral expenses. The primary advantage is that it allows individuals the opportunity to make personal and specific selections for the funeral service that most closely meets their needs. For many, it is comforting to know that money has been set aside for their final expenses, which will in turn reduce the burden on family members at a difficult time. In addition, loved ones are not left guessing which type of funeral service would have been preferred. Another very important reason to establish a preneed burial trust is that SSI/Medicaid recipients are allowed to set aside money to fully fund the service of their choice before their funds are exhausted down to necessary eligibility levels. Consumers in New York State benefit from the strictest, most comprehensive funeral preneed laws in the country. In New York State, 100% of the principal and interest must accrue to the benefit of the Trust (less a third party Trustee administrative fee), which must be deposited in an investment backed by the government of the United States. We at Fred H. McGrath & Son use Cooperative Funeral Fund as our manager for all Pre Need Trusts