Death Care Compliance Law

Death Care Compliance Law

Preneed: A Pandora's Box of Problems

William Stalter is the founder of Stalter Legal Services and the Preneed Resource Company. Bill focuses his law practice on preneed and death care compliance, serving banks, funeral homes, crematories, and cemeteries. He has written multiple published articles

Tag Archives: smart

The Smart Deal: Federal time in the offing

Posted in Cemeteries
In the end, Clayton will likely spend many of his final days in a federal penitentiary. The Memphis Commercial Appeal outlines the plea bargain to be entered by Clayton Smart to conclude criminal investigations in Tennessee, Oklahoma and Michigan. Comments made to the Commercial Appeal story express outrage with the prosecutors and the plea bargain.… Continue Reading

The Domino Effect: the Smart plea

Posted in Cemeteries
Forest Hills’ preneed consumers were hoping for news of retribution, but Clayton Smart’s anticipated plea bargain was put on hold. If news reports are accurate, authorities from Tennessee (and perhaps Michigan and Indiana) have their sites on the individual(s) who facilitated the transactions that eventually left preneed trusts and permanent maintenance trusts depleted. For the… Continue Reading

The long, winding road to reform: Michigan

Posted in Cemeteries, Legislation, Reform
Even when the need for reform is apparent to all, the legislative process can take years. With the Michigan Senate having approved a House substitute, that state’s cemeteries are a step closer to reform that could have avoided Clayton Smart’s pillaging of $70 million dollars of endowed care funds. The Michigan Legislature’s website provides the… Continue Reading

Tennessee’s Preneed Legislation: the cost of doing business

Posted in Consumer Advocates, Fiduciary, Funeral, Legislation, Preneed, Reform
The preneed bill that angered the Funeral Consumers Alliance in February continues to advance within the Tennessee legislature. SB 2705/HB 2763 has been placed on the calendar for the Commerce Committee for April 1st. If passed, the legislation may well make Tennessee the first state to lower its preneed trusting requirement. Despite the need for better consumer protections,… Continue Reading

Preneed trusts and insurance investments

Posted in Preneed, Preneed Tax
One of the many issues facing regulators in the Clayton Smart debacle was the surrender of thousands of Forethought life insurance policies by a Forest Hill preneed trustee. New light will probably be shed on this issue with revelations that Robert Nelms and Clayton Smart may each have been using the same financial management company: Security… Continue Reading

Get Smart! The Missing Fiduciary

Posted in Consumer Advocates, Fiduciary, Preneed
The Clayton Smart debacle has been, and will continue to be, the subject of articles calling for preneed reform. A recent AARP article titled R.I.P. Off  will be one of the more controversial (leading to frequent citations by consumer advocates).   While the article is biased and should be rebuked by the death care industry for its various… Continue Reading