Preplanning in a Pandemic

Peaceful grassy field with sun beaming behind trees.

The current COVID-19 crisis has touched almost everyone around the globe. Many who have lost a loved one during this time are experiencing intensified grief, as they’re unable to gather with loved ones as they normally would. The loss of so many lives and the proximity of this virus has forced people to think about death in a way they never have before, and death is now a common topic around the dinner table. These days, many individuals are contemplating what would happen if the worst-case scenario became reality for their families.

More people than ever are considering preplanning services, to ensure their loved ones are taken care of in the event of their death, and won’t have to worry about the details or financial strain of planning a funeral. For those of you who are thinking about making advanced arrangements, or who already have, you may be wondering how the current crisis is affecting preplanning and services. We’ve provided some answers to some common questions below. We are always available to answer any more questions you may have over the phone.

Is now a good time to preplan, or should I wait?

Now is always a good time to plan ahead for the inevitable. Whether or not there is a deadly virus causing a pandemic, death will always be a part of life. The vast majority of families we are serving right now have lost someone due to reasons unrelated to the coronavirus. Planning your final arrangements, regardless of when that day comes, helps lift a burden off your loved ones during an already difficult time.

If I’ve already preplanned my funeral, how does the pandemic affect me or my family?

Many people have chosen to preplan their final arrangements already. This includes many specific details, such as where to hold their services, if the service is public or private, and whether they want a viewing before they are cremated or buried. The current mandates may or may not change many of these wishes, with limits on how many people can attend a gathering and what types of facilities are available. Our funeral directors are experts in navigating current considerations to honor loved ones in a safe and meaningful way.

If a loved one with existing prearrangements passes before all COVID-19 precautions are lifted, the family has the option to choose to have the service live-streamed to accommodate friends and additional family. They can also opt for a smaller, more private service than originally planned.

From over a century of experience helping families through loss, we strongly believe that some type of gathering for family and friends is crucial to the healing process, and we encourage families to hold a service even if it means having to wait.

How is preplanning my funeral different during this time?

Instead of meeting in person with a member of the French preplanning staff, either at our office or at your home, advanced planning meetings are now held over the phone or virtually. Paperwork is filled out electronically and sent via email, which has always been an option in the past. What has not changed is the level of guidance and service you will receive from a member of our preplanning team, or the dedication they put into helping you plan your arrangements exactly as you want.

To attend one of our virtual preplanning workshops to learn more, call 505-275-7200.

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