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I’ve been doing some research lately about funeral expenses and how difficult it is to try to pay for them. I’ve looked into taking out loans, looking for government help, making payment arrangements, asking family and selling household items.
Nothing prepared me for the loss of my son and quite frankly the expense I incurred in burying him “pauper style” didn’t help.
Jason was 22 and only worked part time. He had not a dime to his name and no life insurance. His “pauper” funeral cost approximately $18,000.00.
Funeral homes do not offer payment arrangements, the funeral home will give you 30 days to pay for the funeral and expects the money by then, if you don’t have the money within six months you WILL go to collections. The funeral home my ex-husband picked out just happened to be one of the most expensive in his area, which of course was in upper Atlanta (Marietta)where most of the “well to do” people live.
The funeral home gave me the number of a lending company and even as she was giving me the number she told me they charge a large amount of interest. I was surprised that she did that, she actually told me to try my family first. Funeral homes DO NOT make payment arrangements.
My mind was reeling, where will I get that kind of money. I went to the internet to see if there was any kind of assistance through the government, I emailed the government made a few calls and still to this day 4 months later I have yet to hear from them.
Well, you know as well as I know that’s a lot of money and no one has that kind of cash sitting around, especially in this economy, and the old saying is “if you lend family money you may as well kiss it goodbye“. I asked my family, as I knew no one had it, after all we just buried my mother a year and a half before. She also didn’t have life insurance.
As far as selling household items, if I lived with my ex-husband I could make a killing, however; I live in a trailer and my furnishings are ALL hand me downs.  

The reason for this blog: No matter how broke you think you are PLEASE get life insurance on your children. The average price for life insurance on a male child is slightly higher than that of a girl. My youngest son will cost $28 a month  and my daughter (if I hurry, she’ll be 17 in Feb.) will cost about $25 a month, and this is through the insurance company that I have my auto and homeowners through, which means I should get the multi-line discount. If you have a young child under 12, there are some great companies like Gerber for instance where you can get insurance for about $5 a month.

DO IT DON‘T WAIT, YOU NEVER KNOW WHEN GOD WILL CALL HIS CHILDREN HOME!



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Member Comments

    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      (華娃娃) ChinaDoll wrote Nov 29, 2008
    • First I am sorry about your loss.  I am in that line of business and I can truly understand the value of a life insurance policy.  You said it right, we insure auto, house, boat, jewelry, recreation toys, health and yet we seldom look into the value of our lives.  Disability is another area that is normally overlooked. During those difficult moment of loss of a loved one, financial hardship is just another added burden.

      No matter how you shop, online or via an agency, please check that out.  Also I ask all my client to purchase extra group life through their company if it is available.

      I hope you are doing well on your grieving and may peace be with you.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Daphne wrote Nov 29, 2008
    • Your son is beautiful.  I am whole-heartedly sorry for such a tragic loss.  Consider yourself hugged!

      I learned how expensive a funeral is when my father died 5 years ago...it’s staggering.  I wonder how some funeral directors sleep at night.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Michelle Rowe wrote Nov 29, 2008
    • I’m sorry to hear about your son. What a great picture you have posted of him. This is so tragic.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Djd258 wrote Nov 29, 2008
    • Thank you to all,  

      I actually didn’t realize how big the picture would be.  

      I have been encouraging everyone I have the opportunity to talk to about the insurance issue.  

      I’m still waiting for my ship to come in, although a collection agency will probably give me the option of payment arrangements for my half. It’s still a staggering amount and self deflating when you know it’ll takes years to pay it off, keeping the memory of that day alive longer  than it should be.

      Again, Thank you ladies, Good night and Sweet dreams



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      (華娃娃) ChinaDoll wrote Nov 29, 2008
    • Allow me to explain further on that 2 yrs period.  It is called the contestable period.  Meaning within the first 2 years, if a death occurs, the insurance co. has a right to revoke the policy and refuse to pay the death claim but refund all the premium back to you.  However, there is ground for this denial: fraud,  misleading information, omitting information, mis-representation or suicide. You do need to read each policy in details though they write them in a sense that only their attorney would understand.  Anyhow, once that 2 years is over, the policy is un-contestable.  There are still exclusions so please again, read the policy or call the company for explanation.  

      One can also purchase a Funeral Home Policy in advance - it includes burial plot, cremation right, urn, coffin, ... the whole 9 yards.  Like a prepaid phone card, you pay it at today’s price in hoping this will beat cost of inflation .  The interest you earn usually is minimum.  Nowadays, you can also buy a coffin at Costco.  

      My parents’ friend passed away accidentally with no relatives.  So all the friends put her funeral together.  We had a parlor for viewing, she was laid in a coffin but later for cremation.  The total cost was $8000.  

      I know it is hard to bury someone cheap and it all depends on each individual family needs.

      I hope this help.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Almostfive0 wrote Nov 30, 2008
    • djd
      Although I have no advice to give you on what to do I would like to offer my condolence on the loss of your son.
      My heart goes out to you.
      Just reading your blog has made me bring up the topic of getting insurance policies for our son and daughter to my husband.
      Thank you for sharing your story and bringing to light the need to be informed on the subject.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Djd258 wrote Dec 1, 2008
    • To all you fine ladies, Thank you for your condolences and prayers.  

      I’m sure there are a few insurance guru’s out there loving me! Because of my hardship and pleading with my friends many new policies are being written for life insurance.  

      Chinadoll, I have a question to you.. because my other children are still under 17, which do you think is a better policy type for them, Term or Whole Life? worried   It really is somewhat confusing.

      To “almostfive0” you‘re a beauty and I would never have believed you‘re “almostfive0“!!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Lilly wrote Dec 22, 2008
    • DJD,

      My heart goes out to you! You and your son both have such  warm smiles and bright spirits.

      I also have question for the insurance gurus. My oldest daughter is over 18 and has epilepsy as a result of an earlier accident in her teenage years. She has some minimal life insurance that we bought her as an infant and we can keep on our health insurance as long as she stays in school full time(difficult for her mentally/physically and for us as we are paying.) We have been told it is next to impossible to get insurance now. Does anyone have any advice?



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      (華娃娃) ChinaDoll wrote Dec 22, 2008
    • I am not insurance guru and again I am not representing any company nor anyone.  

      It is never hurt to try.  Some agents can even request a preliminary quote without going through the entire paperwork, physical, etc., as long as you draw them a good rough picture:

      Since when the accident occurred?
      Is she stabled with medication?
      How frequent is the episode, if any? Duration, etc?
      What is the current medication?

      Of course, they will get back to you with an estimate as well until the paper work and underwriting takes place.  Insurance co also have what they called a re-insurance pool where they can send out to other companies that accept higher risk.  Best is to find someone who will love to work with and FOR you.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      UK Girl wrote Dec 22, 2008
    • What a tragic story and I’m very sorry for your loss especially at this time of year. But how brave of you to talk about this and enlighten people. In the UK we have prepayment on funerals and the Government will also pay for a funeral and it's a decent one. We are very lucky we have a highly enviable welfare system which helps people say on the ladder and we are all grateful for during these times with the economy.



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