Who has the right to the ashes of their loved one?
It is not uncommon for family quarrels to arise over the possession or right to the ashes of the deceased after cremation.
In what scenarios might such fights arise?
A common example is when the Loved One has a second marriage, leaving a spouse who wishes the ashes to be kept or buried in a different location than the wishes of the deceased’s children.
Another example is when there is more than one child and they disagree for geographical or religious reasons. There may also be emotional reasons or a family member who wants to take control.
Who is the owner of the cremation ashes? You do not own
Understand first that you cannot own them because you are referring to a person or a body, therefore they cannot be property. However, this is completely different from having the right.
Who has the right to own cremation ashes?
* Do not take this as a lawyer’s opinion * The right to possess the ashes is likely to be the executor or whoever was in charge of the funeral or basically the person who has the contract with the funeral home.
* Not to be confused with the executor of the will.
But who has the first right to the body or the ashes? Is it the person who paid for the funeral, the next of kin, the person who signed the cremation form? And who decides who gets priority?
The starting point is that:
- No one owns a body – there is no property in a corpse.
- The person who has the right to possession of the body is the person who has the obligation to dispose of the body.
- The crematory must deliver the ashes to the person who delivered the body for cremation.
- Understand that funeral disputes are often complex and many cannot be resolved simply by applying the three rules above.
If there is a will
The person requesting cremation is entitled to possession of the ashes. If there is a dispute, then the appointed executor will have the first right of possession.
What if there is a will, but the executor dies?
Again, the person entitled to receive the ashes is the person who obtained permission for the cremation.
If the executor of the deceased requests permission for cremation but dies, then his or her personal representative.
What happens if there is no will?
Where there is no executor, the following persons who are entitled to possession of the ashes are ranked in priority:
- The spouse or partner living with the deceased immediately prior to death.
- The son or daughter if over 18 years of age.
- The father of the deceased.
- A brother or sister of the deceased over 18 years of age.
What can you do to avoid a family fight?
You can take care of your family members even when you are no longer with them by preparing a will and leaving clear instructions to avoid any unnecessary problems when the time comes.
The executor named in the will is the person who has the duty to take care of the body and arrange the funeral. This helps on who has to sign the paperwork and then take possession of the ashes..
Be sure to discuss any concerns with your attorney when drafting a will so that the executor is chosen carefully and instructions are clearly stated.
If you appoint more than one executor, make sure that they are not at odds with each other or influenced by others (it is not necessary that one executor be a family member).
A word of caution: Crematories are subject to their own regulations; if in fact someone else has arranged the funeral and signed the paperwork, they are referred to as an Applicant. These regulations may lead to the crematory or funeral home delivering the ashes to that Applicant..
Remember that Boinita is a Simple Cremation Service without a Funeral Service with the guarantee of the best price and service.
At Boinita we can take care of the cremation of your loved one. Then, once we have returned the ashes to you, you can arrange a simple memorial service that is perfect for you and your family.
For more information about our service go to http://boinita.com
Boinita offers Single Cremation services without a Funeral Service, with a fixed price and 24-7 customer service. Boinita is located in the metropolitan areas of Aguascalientes, Cancun, Hermosillo, Merida and San Luis Potosi.