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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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Recent Answers from Lisa Carlson

2016-08-26 Disinterring and cremating to move to FL:

Try Crestwood Memorial Chapel. But call at least two others as well. I'm guessing the total cost will run between $5,000 and $7,000. If you are flying to Florida with the cremated remains, make sure they're

2016-06-28 His sister died:

Have him explain the problem to the funeral director and ask for some private time to say his goodbyes to his sister. They won't arrest him as it's a public even if it's announced in the paper, but private

2016-06-07 Funerals In Second Marriages:

It seems to me the first question should be about what to do with your last wife's ashes. Does she have family buried nearby? It might make sense to scatter the ashes near a favorite spot unless you want

2016-05-01 lowest-cost exhumation:

Talk to the cemetery where your mother is buried. They may be willing to do the disinterment and reinterment. The disinterment permit comes from the state registrar, but that may not be required if the

2016-04-06 Digging Up Daddy:

Go to Probate Court in SC. You don't need a lawyer. Explain the situation. Typically, the spouse gets the say-so, so it will be an uphill battle. But the fact that it's an unmarked grave might be in your


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