The time period immediately following a loved one’s death is full of many emotions, and the stress of planning a funeral only exacerbates these emotions. Funeral homes are a place that families turn to and place their trust in shortly after this shattering loss. However, with the rise of funeral homes being acquired by corporations, many funeral homes are more concerned with making a profit than properly handling a burial. The cutting of corners by a funeral home could save the funeral home thousands of dollars, but at the expense of a family’s loved one. The funeral home should be held accountable for their actions when funeral abuse occurs.
Funeral home abuse is unfortunately increasingly common throughout the country. Funeral homes know that this is often a period when the family is not thinking clearly, and use this to take advantage of their fragile emotional state.
Negligence is a legal term which is defined as the acting below a standard of duty of care. In the case of funeral home abuse, the actions of a funeral home rise to the level of negligent behavior when they behave in a manner less than that of an ordinary funeral home. This can occur when a funeral home overcharges their clients for certain services, fails to conduct services which were part of the contract, or mishandles a body, including the misidentification of a body. Any of these instances could have dire repercussions on the family of the deceased.
Funeral neglect can also occur when a funeral home exerts undue influence over a family member who may not have the authority to make decisions regarding the funeral services. When this family member is contacted, rather than the spouse or parents, the funeral home may be acting in a negligent manner. Different members of the family may disagree over the funeral arrangements, however there is only one who may make the ultimate decision, and the failure to contact this family member over the funeral preparations could be deemed to be negligent behavior.
Funeral abuse can also occur when a funeral home purposely attempts to cut corners by placing multiple bodies in a casket, removing jewelry prior to burial, or improperly storing the bodies.
Funeral Neglect Recovery
A family who has experienced the negligent behavior of a funeral home during the funeral of their loved one has the ability to bring a claim for damages against the funeral home or responsible party. The damages can include financial loss and emotional distress.
Going through a traumatic experience such as the loss of a loved one is already a difficult situation. The emotional distress of this time is easily exacerbated by the mishandling of your loved one’s remains or other negligent behavior during the funeral. If you believe your family has been the victim of funeral neglect, an experienced funeral abuse attorney will assist you in drafting a claim and calculating the claim amount.
Malley Law Firm | Houston Funeral Home Negligence Attorney
If your family has been the victim of funeral neglect, do not hesitate to contact the Malley Law Firm. Tony Malley is experienced in handling funeral neglect cases and will work closely with your family to correct any negligent behavior which has taken place during this fragile time. Families often place their trust in funeral homes to ensure that their loved one will be buried or cremated with the utmost respect. Contact our Houston or Beaumont office today for your initial free consultation.