Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Friday, January 24, 2020

Cremation has Replaced Traditional Burials in Popularity in America

UrnCremation became the top choice for funerals in 2015 and has risen in popularity ever since. The National Funeral Directors Association, or NFDA, states that more than half of all Americans who die this year will be cremated. The association even predicts that by 2040 80% of the US will choose cremation.

Mike Nicodemus, licensed funeral director and vice president of cremation services for the NFDA, says that cost and "the decrease in religious restrictions" are two reasons to blame to the shift. In 2016, the average cost of a funeral was $8,000, and a casket alone was between $2,000 and $10,000. That same year a direct cremation cost a mere $2,400. The Vatican has been loosening the rules on cremation since the 1960s. Noq, practicing Catholics are allowed to choose cremation; however, the church still wants them to have a ceremony and for the ashes to be buried, not scattered. 

Many people are choosing to allow their loved ones to use their cremains in unique ways to celebrate their lives. The options now appear endless as more and more companies jump into the mix. Jewelry is easy: You can put bits of your ashes into small containers that are worn around the neck, or even have some ashes blown into a glass or diamond pendant. One company in the UK even lets clients create a vinyl with their ashes. Another domestic business allows loved ones to go out with a bang as a fireworks display.

See Sandee LaMotte, Cremation has Replaced Traditional Burials in Popularity in America and People are Getting Creative with Those Ashes, CNN, January 23, 2020.

https://lawprofessors.typepad.com/trusts_estates_prof/2020/01/cremation-has-replaced-traditional-burials-in-popularity-in-america.html

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