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Can Texas Families Have a Home Funeral?

Do you need to use a funeral home for a memorial service or burial in Texas? Find out what families can do on their own after a loved one dies.
Home Funeral
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What if you or your loved one doesn’t want to use a funeral home? What if you prefer to handle the funeral services yourself? 

To some, it may seem like a radical idea, but it’s a growing trend in America. More families are choosing to bypass funeral homes for the large part. Instead of hiring a funeral director to orchestrate a viewing and memorial service before a burial or cremation, families are taking on the responsibility themselves. For many, it’s a much more personal and natural way of handling a loved one’s last needs before a final goodbye. 

Natural Funerals Done by Families

Funeral directors have noted a distinct trend. People are more interested in natural funerals that are breaking away from traditional services. In 2018, the National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) released survey results that found 54% of Americans were considering a green, natural burial. Funeral home directors had seen a 72% in demand. 

Today, more people are going a step further and taking on more of the funeral services themselves and even care for their loved one after their death until the burial or cremation. Families consider it preferrable to handing a deceased loved one over to a stranger. 

Home deathcare, as it’s sometimes called, is perfectly legal throughout most of the country. It’s even advocated for by major organizations like Death With Dignity and The Order of Good Death that support the death positive movement. Home deathcare can involve:

  • Keeping the body at home rather than sending the body to a funeral home right after the death. 
  • Forgoing the embalming process. 
  • Transporting a loved one’s body to a crematorium or cemetery.
  • Hosting a funeral and/or memorial service at family home.

In Texas, families can even bury a loved one on private property if they want. There’s no need to buy a burial plot in a cemetery.

When Funeral Homes Are a Necessity

A family can choose to personally handle most of the services that have been traditionally done by a funeral home, but there are still a few instances when a funeral home is a necessity.

There are only two reasons you would need a funeral home in Texas:

To obtain death certificates.

To perform a cremation.

Everything else can be handled by the family. This is the case when the deceased is an adult, child or unborn child.

Of course, planning an event like a funeral can require a lot of time, energy and focus all while coping with the loss of a loved one. It’s a very personal decision that involves many factors that are different for every family. 

You may decide you want a funeral home to handle the body preparation and transport for a viewing at the deceased’s home that you coordinate before a burial at a local cemetery. Or you could choose to cremate your loved one and do a memorial after the cremation that you handle entirely on your own. Or you may end up deciding a traditional funeral that you don’t have to plan at all is the best option. 

There are many funeral homes and crematoriums that support natural death and can offer a range of services so that the family gets the level of assistance they want. At Green Cremation Texas we strive to provide families with support no matter how they choose to handle the funeral services. If you need help arranging a cremation in conjunction with home deathcare, please give us a call any hour of the day.

Picture of Marlaena Gonzales

Marlaena Gonzales

Funeral Director
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