|From: Roger adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, Jul 12, 1999 12:24 PM
The Funeral Rule allows, for the first time. a consumer's right to choose the funeral services and merchandise based on need and economics. Perhaps we are seeing the changes in the way funeral are conducted and priced. But at what price? Spending large amounts at a funeral benefits no one but the funeral home. Changes in the funeral business, brought on by the Funeral Rule, have been dramatic and in the best interest of the one with whom the reason for the rule, the consumer. Lets never forget why the Funeral Rule was implemented in the first place. In short, the Funeral Rule works. It has worked and continues to work. An educated consumer is the funeral homes worst customer.
IMPACT ON THE FUNERAL PROVIDER
The implementation of the Funeral Rule has broken the monopolistic business that the funeral homes have enjoyed for years. The consumer has long for the day for an alternative to the cost of purchasing funeral merchandise. The Rule has brought on that change.
CASKET HANDLING FEE PROHIBITION
The casket handling fee prohibition is necessary to allow the consumer to enjoy the alternative way of purchasing a casket. The cost of moving the deceased form container placement to final destination is all ready in the basic services cost. There is no intelligent reason as to why recinding the casket handling fee is in the best interest of the consumer. The motivation behind recinding the fee is the greed and profits of the funeral homes, with complete disregard for the cost savings benefits of the consumer.
THE NON-DECLINABLE FEE
If the funeral home has quality merchandise and provides quality services at reasonable prices without having to resort to deception in order to make a profit should not have to worry about loosing the customer. To collect an feeup front is a tactic used to economically force the customer to use what everservice that the funeral home wants to charge. Its like holding the consumer hostage. What other industry resorts to such tactics. Again, is it in the best interest of the consumer.
THE PRICE LIST
Of all of the provisions of the Funeral Rule, the price list is probably had the greatest impact. The consumer can shop and choose their services with out being being placed in the uncomfortable position applied by the funeral homes sales staff. There are still consumers who are not aware of the price list nor are furnished one when talking to a funeral home. The consumer blindly goes through the maze of services, the most expensive ones I might add, that the funeral home coerces them into buying.
Spending a lot of money on a funeral home benefits no one but the funeral home. The emontional loss is difficult enough with out the consumer having to resort to the savvy sales pitches of the funeral home. The poor consumer is out classed. The Funeral Rule should be only the beginning. Funeral homes must be held accountable for their injudicious contempt for the consumer in their pursuit of gluttonous profits. They are a predatory industry. The FTC is the first governmental organization to stand up to the industry. Protect the public at its most calamitous moment.
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