Burial FAQS

Traditionally, a burial service involves a Visitation, followed by a Funeral service, then a Graveside service.  More often these days people are choosing to have all services the same day, but they could be on different days.  You can choose to have all three or none.  The casket is typically present at these events, and it is your decision on whether or not to have the casket open.  You have the option of having the remains interred (earth burial), or they may be entombed in a mausoleum (above ground burial).  Family or religious traditions are often a factors for choosing burial.  Decisions need to be made on whether the body needs to be embalmed, what kind of casket to use, what cemetery to use.

Burial FAQ

How is the Casket shipped?
All caskets will be delivered, with "White Glove Delivery" service, to your selected funeral home in the Kansas City area for free (within 5miles from our location). Extra $0.50 per mile, delivery charge will be charged for any extra distance.  All burial vaults will be delivered and set by our vault company to your selected cemetery in the Kansas City area for free (within 40 miles from zip code 66104). Extra $4.50 per mile delivery charge will be charged for the extra distance. 

How are the Vaults shipped?
All burial vaults will be delivered and set by our vault company to your selected cemetery in the Kansas City area for free (within 40 miles from zip code 66104). Extra $4.50 per mile delivery charge will be charged for the extra distance.  We do have partnerships with other vault companies in other places.  Please call to see if we have one closer to the chosen Cemetery.

Does a body have to be embalmed before it is buried?
No, embalming is not required by law.  Embalming is a choice which depends on factors like if there is to be an open casket viewing of the body or if there is to be an extended time between death and burial.  Public health laws may require embalming if the body is going to be transported by air or rail or crossing state lines.

What are burial vaults and grave liners?
These are the outside containers into which the casket is placed.  Burial vaults are designed to protect the casket and may be made of a variety or combination of materials including concrete, stainless steel, galvanized steel, copper, bronze, plastic or fiberglass.  A grave liner is a lightweight version of a vault which simply keeps the grave surface from sinking in. It offers no protection for the casket. it is not sealed or water tight.  It has holes drilled in the bottom to allow water to drain.

What is opening and closing and why is it so expensive?
Opening and closing fees can include up to and beyond 50 separate services provided by the cemetery.  Typically, the opening and closing fee include administration and permanent record keeping (determining ownership, obtaining permission and the completion of other documentation which may be required, entering the interment particulars in the interment register, maintaining all legal files); opening and closing the grave (locating the grave and laying out the boundaries, excavating and filling the interment space); installation and removal of the lowering device; placement and removal of artificial grass dressing and coco-matting at the grave site, leveling, tamping, re-grading and sodding the grave site and leveling and re-sodding the grave if the earth settles. 

Can we dig our own grave to avoid the charge for opening and closing?
The actual opening and closing of the grave is just one component of the opening and closing fee.  Due to safety issues which arise around the use of machinery on cemetery property and the protection of other grave sites, the actual opening and closing of the grave is conducted by cemetery grounds personnel or an authorized company.

Why is having a place to visit so important?
To remember and to be remembered are natural human needs.  A permanent memorial in a cemetery provides a focal point for remembrance and memorializing the deceased.  Throughout human history, memorialization of the dead has been a key component of almost every culture.  Psychologists say that remembrance practices, from the funeral or memorial service to permanent memorialization, serve an important emotional function for survivors by helping them bring closure and allowing the healing process to begin.  Providing a permanent resting place for the deceased is a dignified treatment for a loved one’s mortal remains, which fulfills the natural human desire for memorialization.

What options are available besides ground burial?
Besides ground burial, some cemeteries offer interment in lawn crypts or entombment in mausoleums.  In addition, most cemeteries provide choices for those who have selected cremation.  These often include placement of cremated remains in a niche of a columbarium or interment in an urn space. 

How soon after a death must an individual be buried?
There is no law that states a specific time from for burial.  Considerations that will affect timeline include the need to secure all permits and authorizations, notification of family and friends, preparation of cemetery site and religious considerations.  Public heath laws may have limitations on the maximum length of time allowed to pass prior to final disposition. 

Must I purchase a burial vault?
Most large, active cemeteries have regulations that require the use of a basic grave liner for maintenance and safety purposes.  Either a grave liner or a burial vault will satisfy these requirements.  Some smaller rural or churchyard cemeteries do not require use of a container to surround the casket in the grave.

What is a Vault?
A casket is commonly considered the final resting bed of a loved one. However, caskets alone are not designed to support the weight of the surrounding soil. Burial vaults are permanent outer enclosures designed to support the weight of the soil and cemetery equipment. A burial vault should offer you peace of mind by protecting the casket against water and weight damage.

What is the Difference between 18 Gauge and 20 Gauge Steel Caskets?
The word gauge with a number by it refers to the thickness of the metal used in constructing the casket. The smaller the number the thicker the steel. The number refers to how many sheets are needed to make 1 inch, 20 sheets for 20 gauge or 18 sheets for 18 gauge. 18 Gauge would be a stronger metal than a 20 Gauge. A 20 Gauge casket would fulfill the same need as an 18 Gauge but for less money. Most oversize caskets are 20 gauge because it is lighter.

Does the Casket Have Everything I Need?
When you purchase a casket from us, the casket comes complete ready to go for your loved one. It includes the pillow, adjustable bed, and throw. You do not need to purchase anything else to prepare your loved one for their final resting place. Some people like to personalize the casket for their loved one buy purchasing a more personal head panel.

Are All The Caskets The Same Size?
If you are in need of a casket for your loved one, more than likely they will fit in a standard casket. If you loved one is a larger individual then they would need an oversized casket. There is a limited selection of oversized caskets and they are size specific. Please talk with your funeral director about the size of casket your loved one will need. An oversized casket may also require an oversized vault.

Is a Casket That I Buy from Direct Casket Outlet the Same Quality As The Funeral Home?
Yes we buy from the same manufactures as the Funeral Homes. There is a good chance that the casket that you buy from us is the same casket that you would buy from your local funeral showroom floor or catalog.

Is It Necessary To Have a Sealed Casket?
Usually that depends upon the cemetery and funeral plans being made. You would need to discuss that with your funeral director. Most cemeteries would be okay with a casket that is not sealed. The main reason people choose a sealed casket is to protect the remains of your loved one. However there is no permanent seal on a casket. All sealed caskets use a rubber gasket that will break down over time. This can be delayed by placing the casket in a sealed vault.

Does a Wood Casket Seal?
No, wood caskets do not have a gasket. If you were to seal a wood casket, it would crack and split due to the locking mechanism when it is cranked down tight. If you are interested in a casket with a gasket, a metal casket is your only option.

Can I Buy A Casket Online & Have It Delivered To A Funeral Home?
Yes. You can buy from an online casket company and have it delivered to your selected funeral home. The funeral director cannot tell you that they will not accept a casket from an outside source. It is against Federal law. According to the Federal Trade Commission a casket can be purchased from any company and then delivered to your selected funeral home. The funeral home cannot charge you extra because you are buying a casket elsewhere.

How Do You Work With The Funeral Home?
The best thing to do is to talk to the funeral director about his services. By law they have to give you an itemized price list of each service and it cannot change after you buy the casket elsewhere. After you have a price list then you can mention to him that you would like to buy a casket on your own. No funeral home can charge a fee for the customer using a casket bought elsewhere through an alternate source, nor require a family member to be present at the time of delivery, nor even make a funeral service package contingent upon the purchase of one of their caskets. Also we will call the Funeral Home to confirm delivery time and location. 

Swing Handles VS Stationary Handles?
Some casket handles are Stationary and some are Swing. Both do the job intended but depending on those carrying the casket as to weather they have a comfortable fit. Stationary handles are about a inch to an inch and a quarter while the Swing handles are larger at an inch and three quarters to two inches. So depending on hand size the grip may be better on the Swing for some pallbearers.

What is a Head Panel?
A Head Panel is a decorative, cloth covered board fitting on the inside of the casket under the lid. There many patterns to choose from including patterns for each branch of the armed forces including "United States Veteran." A Head Panel is a nice way to personalize your casket choice.

What is a sealed casket?
There is no truly sealed casket. A casket with a gasket is considered sealed because it has a shaped piece of rubber around lid that helps protect the inside from the elements. These caskets also provide a screw down lid locking lid in place. Rubber gaskets will deteriorate over time providing no long term protection. A casket that is a non sealer has no gasket and has only a latch to hold lid in place. If you want long term protection I would recommend a sealed Casket and sealed Vault.

How quickly can you get a casket to me?
We personally deliver the casket to the selected funeral home and can delivered today if required by the funeral home. There is no casket delivery charge within 50 miles of our location. We charge $0.50 (cents) per mile outside this area. When you place the order we need to know the name of the deceased and the name of the funeral home you are using. The process we follow is as follows: 1. You place the order. 2. We verify the selections with you. 3. We call the funeral home. 4. We verify delivery time and location. 5. We deliver the casket.
We verify all provided information in case of errors. We verify delivery location because some funeral homes will use a central care facility and would prefer the casket to be delivered to that location.

Do you have a specific casket that I saw at the funeral home?
There are over 200 suppliers of caskets in the USA. All are made the same way and honestly they are all just attractive containers for the body. We show you lots models and the funeral home shows you 7 or 8. We don’t always have every model that they have, but our selections are comparable so it comes down to paying us $1600 or buy from the funeral home for $2700.

What payment types do you accept?
We accept All Major Credit cards (Visa, Mater Card, Discover and American Express), Cash and Check.

What is Perpetual Care?
"Perpetual Care" usually refers to the correct terms Permanent Care or Endowment Care. These Care funds are collected with each Interment Space sale to maintain the grounds, roads, and buildings of the cemetery.

Must I purchase a burial vault?
In most areas of the country, state or local laws do not require that you buy a container to surround the casket in the grave. However, most cemeteries require that you have such a container so that the ground will not sink. Either a grave liner or a burial vault will satisfy these requirements.

What recourse does a consumer have for poor service or overcharging?
While most funeral homes provide outstanding services, sometimes things can go wrong. Funeral service is regulated by the Federal Trade Commission and state licensing boards. In most cases, the consumer should discuss problems with the funeral director first. If the dispute cannot be solved by talking with the funeral director, the consumer may wish to contact the FTC by contacting the Consumer Response Center by phone, toll-free, at 1-877-FTC-HELP (382-4357); TDD: 1-866-653-4261; by mail: Consumer Response Center, Federal Trade Commission, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20580; or on the Internet at www.ftc.gov, using the online complaint form. You may also choose to contact the local Better Business Bureau, or your state consumer protection office.

Is it possible to have a traditional funeral if someone dies of AIDS?
Yes, a person who dies of an AIDS-related illness is entitled to the same service options afforded to anyone else. If public viewing is consistent with local or personal customs, that option is encouraged. Touching the deceased's face or hands is perfectly safe. Because the grief experienced by survivors may include a variety of feelings, survivors may need even more support than survivors of non-AIDS-related deaths.

Can I personalize my funeral service?
Absolutely, in fact, we recommend it. After all, the funeral is a celebration of life. Funeral directors are happy to discuss all options and ensure your funeral is tailored to your wishes. It may be personalized in many unique ways.

What type of service should I have?
Only you can answer that question. The type of service conducted for the deceased, if not noted in a pre-plan, is decided by the family. The service is usually held at a place of worship or at the funeral home. The service may vary in ritual according to religious denomination or the wishes of the family. The presence of friends at this time is an acknowledgment of friendship and support. A private service is by invitation only where selected relatives and a few close friends attend the funeral service. A memorial service is usually a service without the body present and can vary in ceremony and procedures according to the family's community and religious affiliations.