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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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Debbie05/29/15101010Thank you for taking the time to .....
Karen04/26/15101010Thank you for the clear, precise, and .....

Recent Answers from Lisa Carlson

2015-06-29 disintering cremated remains:

What did your father want? Are any of his wishes in writing?    Why is your sister mad? What does she want done?    Usually a cemetery would require the permission of the plot owner to move remains. Talk

2015-06-13 exhume:

I would simply go to the cemetery and tell them you've decided to keep the ashes at home. I suspect they will be sympathetic. If they give you a hard time, you can go to Probate Court without a lawyer

2015-06-07 moving a family member:

The fact that the husband's family is getting the plot back for the third wife should be sufficient. Is he planning to move the existing stone? Check with a monument dealer to see if the second wife's

2015-05-22 moving buried bodies from one state to another:

You may be absolutely right, but it sounds as if she won't accept that. There is a casket/vault combination often used for infant deaths. If one of those was used, then it will likely be intact. But I

2015-05-08 charge:

I'm appalled! I think she should be reported to the AG's consumer protection division.    **********  Did she give you any written material? If so, I'd love to see it. My fax number is 802-417-3002. Or


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