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Funeral Law. Having written a 512-page book on funeral law for consumers with state-by-state information, I am very conversant with consumer rights in this regard: What are the laws on disposition of cremated remains? Is embalming required? Do I have to use a funeral home? Can I have a home wake? Is it a state law to buy a vault? I prepaid for a funeral but changed my mind. They won`t give me all my money back. What can I do? . . . If you have an immediate need for information because a death has just occurred or is about to occur, you may call me at 802-482-6021.

Experience in the area

I have monitored the funeral industry on behalf of consumers for over 20 years. I have been a guest speaker to funeral trade organizations, consumer workshops, and social service professionals. I am regularly consulted by lawyers and legislators as well as journalists.


Funeral Ethics Organization ( Funeral Consumers Alliance (


Caring for Your Own Dead (1987) Caring for the Dead: Your Final Act of Love (1998) I Died Laughing: Funeral Education with a Light Touch (2001) Final Rights: Reclaiming the American Way of Death (2011) with co-author Joshua Slocum


Masters degree in Administration and Special Education

Past/Present Clients

Available as an expert witness for funeral-related court cases.

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Thomas Hardman11/17/14101010 
julia 11/09/14101010Dear Lisa, Thank you for your input .....
Mary10/30/14101010Dear Lisa Carlson Thank you so much .....
Juan10/23/14101010Lisa, Thank you so much for your .....
Tracy10/22/14101010Thank you very much for the informative .....

Recent Answers from Lisa Carlson

2015-01-27 starting family cemetary:

Check with the local zoning laws which are likely silent except in Bibb county. Then draw a map of your land showing where the family burial ground will be and pay to have it recorded with the deed. A

2014-12-16 burial rights:

The first thing you need to do is talk about your wishes with those who are likely to survive you to make sure they'll be comfortable with your plans.    You don't need to be embalmed. You don't need a

2014-11-26 Person buried in wrong grave - cover up:

Who owns the cemetery? If it's owned by a large funeral conglomerate with deep pockets, you should be able to find a "personal injury" lawyer to take the case on contingency. If it's a cemetery owned by

2014-11-22 Transport of human body from CA to OR:

You can't force the receiving mortuary to use Inman. The $1,795 is probably listed on their price list as "receiving remains," yes, going to the airport. Not sure what the rest of the $10,000 is for .

2014-11-17 Family stone:

I'm sure you realize that most spouses expect to be buried with the other spouse and it's unfortunate that things weren't talked over early on.    Contact a monument dealer and find out how much it will


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