Frequently Asked Questions
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Cremation is the process of burning a human body at a very high temperature until it is reduced to particles. These particles are then crushed into what’s called “cremated remains.” Although known commonly as “ashes,” cremated remains resemble course, gray sand. Cremation has existed as an alternative to burial since prehistoric times.
If your loved one died in a hospital, hospice or nursing home, the medical staff will notify the relevant authorities on your behalf. If your loved one died at home following a terminal illness, you should first notify the doctor or healthcare facility that had been providing treatment. If your loved one died unexpectedly and not in a healthcare facility, you must call 911 immediately. Emergency services will come to confirm the death and then call the Medical Examiner-Coroner (ME-C) in your county.
After the proper authorities have been notified, you can call CremationSociety.com to arrange for services. We will take your loved one into our care shortly afterward.
Because we own our own crematory, we can usually carry out the cremation within seven (7) business days of receiving your authorization and the county’s permit. Additionally, it’s important for you to know that in order to comply with state law, we must hold a body for at least 48 hours before cremation.
Your options are almost limitless, but the most common ones are keeping the ashes at home in a keepsake urn, dividing the ashes between close family, inurnment above or below ground, or scattering. We’d be happy to give you more advice about this. Let’s talk about it.
Yes, you will need certified copies of the death certificate to carry out certain tasks, such as notifying the Social Security Administration and your bank. Since doctors, hospitals, and funeral directors in California use an electronic system for filing death certificates, this is easy and quick. Our price includes two (2) copies of the death certificate.
California has the strictest laws in the US when it comes to dealing with ashes. In general, you may scatter ashes in any area of the state where there is no local prohibition and if you obtain written permission from the property owner or governing agency. For more details about scattering ashes on land, at sea or by air, please visit the Cemetery and Funeral Bureau website.
No, you don’t. All that’s required is what is known as an alternative cremation container, to provide safety for the cremation operator and dignity for your loved one. These look like traditional caskets but they’re made out of heavy cardboard. The casket burns with the body in the cremation chamber.
In California, the person who has the right to control the disposition of the body is the person who authorizes the cremation. This written permission, called the Declaration for Disposition of Cremated Remains form, is typically signed by the spouse, next-of-kin or appointed guardian.
The doctor who last attended your loved one has 15 hours after death is confirmed to sign the death certificate. In California, the death certificate must be filed with the local registrar of births and deaths within eight (8) calendar days of the death, and before your loved one gets cremated or buried. We include the cost of filing the death certificate in our cremation package.
Never. Firstly, state and federal law prohibit it. Secondly, the cremation chamber is purposefully only big enough to contain one body at a time. Since we own and operate our own crematory, you can be assured that our staff follow strict procedures at all times and that the ashes we deliver to you will be the ashes of your loved one.
Two kinds of certified death certificates exist in California. A certified informational copy can be requested by anyone because it can’t be used legally to establish an identity. A full certified copy can be ordered only by certain people, such as next-of-kin, law enforcement agents or legally authorized representatives of the deceased. More details are in the Pamphlet for Certified Copies of Death Records, from the California Department of Public Health website.
We usually deliver the ashes one to three (1-3) days after the cremation. We’ll contact you to arrange a time that one of our representatives will arrive at your home or office with the selected urn or, if you choose, we will mail the remains to an address you provide. No need to take time off work or adjust your schedule. We’ll make it easy and convenient for you.
It is possible to leave certain personal items in the casket with your loved one. Some people like to leave a piece of jewelry or a memento. However, we do have to remove items such as pacemakers, prostheses, and mechanical or radioactive devices or implants before the cremation. If you would like to have a memento accompany your love one, please ask us for guidance.
Yes. Many families decide to honor their loved one with a memorial service after cremation. It can be held within days of the cremation, or weeks or months later if that is more convenient for you. You may also decide whether or not you want the cremated remains at the memorial service. That’s one of the main benefits of cremation – you’ll celebrate the life of your loved one at a time and place of your choosing.
Not ready to make a decision?
We can pick up your loved one right away and keep them in our care for up to 72 hours. If you decide to use a different cremation company or mortuary, we will arrange for your loved one to be transferred there.