In our third post on Missouri’s endowed care cemetery audits we look at the request for the cemetery’s legal documents.  The current audit notice  requests copies of the cemetery’s trust agreement, rules and regulations, contract forms, deed forms, brochures and any other materials making an endowed care representation.  In essence, the audit is going to

A Google search of “state funeral association master trust” will return hyperlinks to dozens of state funeral director associations.  In the 1970’s, funeral associations began establishing master preneed trusts as an alternative to passbook savings accounts.  As preneed gained acceptance with funeral directors, the associations saw the opportunity to provide administration and create a revenue

It has been three years since we last posted about those states that have passed laws allowing cemetery trusts to take a unitrust election.  Since then, Arizona, California and Indiana have joined the list.  The movement towards fixed care fund distributions has not caught on as quickly as some thought when the concept was introduced

When Missouri’s endowed care law was passed in 1994, all cemeteries were required to register with the Office of Endowed Care Cemeteries.  Cemeteries can seek licensing as either an endowed care cemetery or a non-endowed cemetery, or the cemetery could claim it was exempt from Chapter 214 pursuant to the definition of “Cemetery” pursuant to

It would be my assumption that the majority of the country’s cemeteries do not maintain a trust for the maintenance and care of its graves.  While this may differ from state to state, most states’ perpetual care statutes exempt small family cemeteries, not for profit cemeteries, municipal cemeteries, county cemeteries and church cemeteries from their

These are tough times for cemeteries.  Too many planned on a steady revenues from grave sales, and have not trusted enough funds for future maintenance expenses. Grave sale revenues have been dramatically cut by the public’s acceptance of cremation.  Subsequent to the Great Recession of 2008, many of our funeral home clients reported a significant

The Missouri legislature has passed a bill to authorize county commissioners to diversify their cemetery trusts.  Prior to the passage of House Bill No. 51 Missouri’s counties were restricted in how they could invest cemetery care funds.  Essentially, a Missouri county could invest care funds only in government bonds.  But, since the mortgage bond crisis

The July 25th Marketplace Morning Report on National Public Radio included a segment called Allan Sloan’s lessons on bond investments. Mr. Sloan is a business columnist for the Washington Post who recently wrote that the current Treasury bond market is “out of whack”, and poses a risker investment than the stock markets. Mr. Sloan