When it comes to picking a burial plot, you need to do so while you are among the living.
If you are not opting for cremation, finding a cemetery and performing your due diligence will be a vital part of your end-of-life planning.
Failing to investigate may have negative consequences.
Enter a recent WTSP 10 News story, titled “Protecting your loved ones last resting place."
It tells a cautionary tale of an overgrown Sarasota, Florida cemetery.
Sarasota Memorial Park was unkempt, overgrown and not in compliance with county codes.
Only after a complaint from a few dog walkers, some bad press and a warning from the County Code Enforcement Department did the property managers respectfully care for the grounds.
Do not let this happen to your final resting place.
So what do you need to know?
Actually, your loved ones will for obvious reasons.
Why put them in that position in the first place?
So, how do you vett a cemetery?
Do your research.
Learn the reputation of the memorial park.
Ask about maintenance allocations and the endowment trust fund.
What is an endowment trust fund?
This trust fund places money from the purchase aside for upkeep.
In Florida where the aforementioned cemetery is located, state law requires that 10% of a plot purchase transaction must go to this endowment fund, and Florida State Statute §497.262 requires cemetery managers to keep the property “well cared for and maintained in a proper and dignified condition.”
Once you or your loved one has selected a final resting place, hold the management accountable.
Take a photo on the day you make the purchase and take a picture every time you visit for visual evidence and support.
By choosing wisely, you and your loved ones can rest in peace.
Remember: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” When making your financial, tax and estate plans, do not go it alone. Be sure to engage competent professional counsel.
For more information about estate planning in Overland Park, KS (and throughout the rest of Kansas and Missouri), visit our estate planning website and be sure to subscribe to our complimentary estate planning e-newsletter while you are there.
Reference: WTSP 10 News (June 27, 2016) “Protecting your loved ones last resting place”