By Bridget Small
FTC Consumer Advocate
May 2, 2022
After the loss of a loved one, family and friends often need to make decisions about funeral arrangements quickly. You may need to plan services by phone or online. When you ask for information by phone, the FTC’s Funeral Rule requires funeral providers to give you accurate information.
Today, the FTC announced a lawsuit accusing Legacy Cremation Services, LLC, Funeral and Cremation Group of North America, LLC, and their owner of violating the Funeral Rule by making false statements about cremation prices and business locations. According to the FTC, Legacy’s online ads make it look like it provides cremation services in thousands of cities and towns. In fact, Legacy doesn’t own or operate a single crematory. Its staff take customers’ information, give price quotes, and then — often without clear notice to families — arrange for third party crematories and funeral homes to pick up loved ones’ remains and perform cremations. In many cases, the third parties aren’t in the locations Legacy says it operates. And often Legacy won’t tell families the name or location of the crematory or funeral home.
The FTC also says Legacy makes false claims about its prices. People rarely — if ever — get cremation services for the price Legacy quotes when they call, or for $695, which is the low end of prices Legacy lists on its website. At times, when people complained about price increases, Legacy threatened — or refused — to return cremated remains until they paid the higher prices.
When you’re looking for a funeral provider, see what people say about their experiences. Search the business’ name online plus words like “complaint” or “review.” When you talk to a provider about a service, ask what’s included in the price. If a provider won’t answer your questions or give you required information, look somewhere else. And if you’re having a problem, please tell the FTC at ReportFraud.ftc.gov.