Funeral Preneed Scam; Honesty,Money|YourFuneralGuy

18 Apr
Trust is a word used by funeral directors. Often you have to keep them honest so there can be trust.

Trust is a word used by funeral directors. Often you have to keep them honest so there can be trust.

The one thing you need the most in planning your funeral is honesty. Honesty about death,  about your funeral wishes, and  honesty from the funeral director. It takes courage to think about death and your funeral. You also need the courage to find an honest funeral director and strength to keep that person honest.

This is the lesson learned from the Illinois Funeral Directors Association Ponzi Scheme  The IFDA was not honest about the where they were putting the money. They kept funeral directors in the dark as to what was going on with the money. They did not “notify the folks” (policyholders) as to the fact that the  their money invested in insurance policies as is required by law. A  letter to the editor at the State Journal Register sums it up this way:

“Since an increasing number of Americans are pre-arranging their funerals (although not always pre-funding), they deserve to know exactly what will happen to any money they give their funeral director. If the current status of the IFDA fund is just the result of bad judgment, that’s one thing. However, if more is involved, then any corrective measures will certainly be aided by transparency — not translucency as you now have. (Perhaps we do need a bill similar to that proposed by Dan Brady from Bloomington.)”

Even the Six Funeral homes who have filed a lawsuit did not do their due dillegence and keep track of their customers money. If they had done right by their customers the problem may have been resolved years earlier. The Lawsuit led by Calvert Funeral Homes may not have been needed to be filed on  the IFDA Preneed Trust. The very act of filing that lawsuit shows a lack of due dilligence with the folks money.

Honesty and trust are keys to coming in under the average cost of a funeral.

Funeral Cost/Funeral Industry blog by your funeral guy


4 Responses to “Funeral Preneed Scam; Honesty,Money|YourFuneralGuy”

  1. marsellusm710 April 18, 2009 at 5:21 pm #

    Funeral Guy,
    I agree with you in whole on your first paragraph. As dad always said, “Honesty IS the best policy”. For all of you who read this blog, There is still an overwhelming majority of us who are honest and trustworthy here in the Land of Lincoln, irregardless what you might read. Those from Illinois that you are reading about who have damaged the Funeral Trust are the bad apples you are reading about.

    I would like to correct your use of “Policyholders” in the second paragraph of your article to that of “Trust Account Holder” or “Trust Participant” as the funds as we FD’s sent them in to IFDA were in fact Trust accounts. Those funds were then, and unbeknownst to us, converted to Life insurance products. In this paragraph of this article you correctly state “The IFDA was not honest about where they were putting the money. They kept funeral directors in the dark as to what was going on with the money”. True, but then you hammer the Calvert et al, referred to as the six F.H.’s that filed the lawsuit “did not due their due dillegence in keeping track of their customers money”…. DUH!!!! The folks at IFDA Services were telling us all was well and sending us earnings on account statements every month stating that our accounts were compounding with interest. IFDA kept us all in the dark about the investments. They, IFDA, had a written investment policy that was given to all of who participated in the trust program, but didn’t follow it themselves. We all (funeral home owners) had the understanding that the funds were in super CD’s, and a host of conservative and stable investments that were staggered to mature at certain timetables. As a good friend of mine was told at a meeting when IFDA lost their trust license, and asked why we were never able to receive financial doc’s on the trust as to the growth, expenses and payouts, He was told a Board Member( Donald Henderson), that he and others like him were on a “Need TO Know Basis” on that information. My friend and colleague also summed it up right in the Chicago Tribune, that we Funeral Directors were “Like Sheep Led To Slaughter” by our own people.

    Funeral guy, I really wonder if you truly have a handle on the wrongdoing that the IFDA Board, it’s past presidents since 2000 – 2001, former executive directors and their infamous financial adviser have done to the appx. 635 funeral homes and their client families that participate and make up the IFDA Trust? I am holding you as a reporter and blogger accountable to get your facts straight before lashing out against Calvert, et al. and the rest of us funeral directors out here who bust our asses on a daily basis to cover the shortcomings of others in the profession. Quite frankly, I feel funeral service needs a good enema.

    I appreciate your blog and bringing news items forth, Please make sure you understand who has done the damage with IFDA and who’s paying for the damage and who is not to be damaged by the actions taken by the IFDA Hierarchy.

  2. yourfuneralguy April 19, 2009 at 7:19 am #

    Thank you for your comments. The reason I am hammering the Six Funeral directors named in Calvert et al is that I have experience that 2 of the six funeral directors named in the lawsuit are less than honorable.

    In fact one has gone to great lengths to limit my comments at this blog. In reality they have done it to some degree. I have started to reveal some of their slick tactics here:

    I also have direct knowledge that 1of the 6 who filed the lawsuit again did not do due dilligence.

    Now you are starting to convince me that maybe due diligence on the IFDA Preneed Trust could not have been done anyway.

    As far as my reference to policyholders, the Secretary of State document as I read it refers to funeral directors and client policyholders who are funeral home customers.


    Your Funeral Guy

  3. Greensboro funeral services October 7, 2012 at 5:43 pm #

    An interesting discussion is worth comment. I do think that you need to write more about this issue, it may not be a taboo subject but usually folks don’t speak about such subjects. To the next! Best wishes!!


  1. They can't legislate morality, but they can impose due diligence requirements | Death Care Compliance Law - February 20, 2014

    […] a nutshell, Illinois funeral directors did not perform due diligence with regard to the management of their master trust. Instead, funeral directors placed their trust […]

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