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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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    K = Knowledgeability    C = Clarity of Response    P = Politeness
Karen04/26/15101010Thank you for the clear, precise, and .....
Samantha03/09/15101010Thank you so much for your prompt .....
Sandra02/28/15101010She actually called me the same day .....
Thomas Hardman11/17/14101010 

Recent Answers from Lisa Carlson

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

2015-05-06 Indiana funeral laws:

In Indiana, the burial transit permit may be issued only to a funeral director once the death certificate is filed. With electronic death registration, there is essentially no "paperwork" for the family

2015-05-06 Indiana funeral laws:

You can get the Indiana chapter from the Bookstore at for only $5.    You say you're a "death midwife." Exactly what are you planning to do? Are you giving your services for free or charging?

2015-04-05 cremation by guardian:

Is your mother mentally alert? If so, she could indeed authorize the cremation without the children's permission. That said, I'm guessing the guardianship gave your sister the right to authorize the cremation

2015-03-31 Transporting the Dead in Texas:

If you're doing this for a fee, you may need to be a licensed funeral director or working for one. To my knowledge, TX doesn't license body transporters as Florida does. I'm not sure such services are


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