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Funerals/Girlfriend had my husband cremated


My husband recently passed away on Oct 30 of 2012 in Texas and I was not notified of this until 3 days later, when I found out I called the funeral home and told them who I was and that I was his wife his legal wife. His girlfriend told them that she was his common law wife and they took her word on it and cremated him and gave her the ashes. I proved that I was his wife and thast we were not divorced and she can not stand behind the common law marriage because of this. What are the statutes and what should have been the protocal of the funeral home?


To the best of my knowledge in every state a spouse has the primary right to direct the disposition of their spouses body. The exception to this could be if your husband had signed a cremation authorization for himself and directed that his girlfriend was to receive his cremated remains.

My best advise for you would be to contact the Texas Funeral Service Commission   and ask them about this situation.

I hope this helped,

Erin Phelps


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Erin Phelps


I can answer any questions about funerals,embalming, cremation, green burial, home funerals, burial on your own land, scattering of cremated remains and any other death related questions you may have.


I have worked in the death care industry since 1977, owning my own funeral home since 1990. I worked as an EMT at a funeral home based ambulance service for 6 years gain much experience there. When I opened my funeral home, my goal was to provide honest, straightforward, significant and affordable services to the families who called upon me for my services. Since Sept. 2008, I have served as a member of the Oregon State Mortuary & Cemetery Board, which regulates the operation of mortuarys and cemeteries in Oregon. I have been a regular attendee and speaker at various funeral related seminars over the years and am a frequent contributor to "Mortuary Management" magazine. I was one of the first funeral directors in Oregon to offer "Green" or "Natural" burial services and to offer assistance to families who wish to take care of their own family members at home. I also have vast experience in the repatriation of a deceased to their country of origin.

Oregon Funeral Directors Association, International Cemetery, Cremation & Funeral Association, Cremation Association of America, Funeral Ethics Association Natural End Funeral Services - Charter Member.

Mortuary Management Funeral Monitor Funeral Service Insider

Attended the University of Oregon Associates of Science Degree - Mt. Hood Community College, Gresham, Oregon

Awards and Honors
Top 10 Eye Enucleators in Oregon. Nationally Board Certified Funeral Director/Embalmer Honored in "Funeral Monitor", Aug. 2007 for my business practices.

Past/Present Clients
Since 1990, I have served over 10,000 families, requesting the gamute of services ranging from the simplest to the most elaborate. Servicing christian, jewish, muslim, buddhist, hindu and humanists, along with families from every continent in the world.

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