One strength of the state association master trust is that it can provide the ‘critical mass’ required for economies of scale to reduce trust management costs.  As the state master trust grows in size, the association can better negotiate asset management arrangements.  However, the reality has been very different for these programs.  The reorganization of

On July 27th, a Missouri court will consider a motion filed by the Missouri State Board of Embalmers and Funeral Directors to be dismissed from the lawsuit filed by the Missouri Funeral Trust.  One of the allegations made by the Missouri Funeral Trust was that confidential information obtained by a state auditor regarding the program’s

When NPS first collapsed, the estimate of the company’s liabilities to funeral homes was reported to have been as much as a billion dollars.  When the SDR finally brought the case to trial, the damages awarded by the jury were less than half of the original estimate.   While this author believes the actual damages are

It is common for master preneed trusts to have investments directed by an independent fund manager.  The pooling of smaller trusts allows funeral directors to achieve the critical mass needed to engage professional asset management.  When investment functions are delegated, the trustee typically wants to be relieved of the supervision and liabilities that accompany those

There are three scenarios for administration of preneed installment payments: the funeral operator collects payments, the trustee collects payments or a third party administrator collects payments.  The entity collecting installment payments must be able to apply each payment to the correct preneed account, and provide the other party (or parties) current payment balances.  If the

The conventional guaranteed preneed transaction is premised upon investment returns offsetting performance cost increases to the funeral home.  Many funeral homes restrict consumers to single payment preneed contracts to limit their exposure to funding short falls.  If the funeral home allows the consumer to pay the preneed purchase price over 60 months, the preneed trust

The reversal of the Heffner decision generated a wide range of comments, but those made by Wilson Beebe resonated most with our initial review of the decision.  The lower court decision was based on a challenge that the Pennsylvania Funeral Law was unconstitutional on its face.   A law can also be challenged as unconstitutional because

Representatives from Nebraska’s death care industry will be meeting this fall to discuss the Department of Insurance’s preneed legislative proposal, and the right of sepulcher will be among the issues for discussion.

Nebraska is among the states that have statutory provisions defining the priority of individuals who may claim the right of sepulcher (which is

The age of the internet has taken its toll on the industry’s trade associations. Instead of attending the state association convention, operators can now surf the net for what’s new in the industry. Providing new and unique content is difficult. Another challenge is that the 3 day convention. It is asking alot to have smaller