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Funerals/recieving ownership of burial plot


QUESTION: My father has been dead since 2008 and his kids is trying to purchase him a headstone, but we can't because his wife have been fighting us in court, because she didn't want us to have anything and she file a law suit pertaining to his death. we just sign a waiver amount in 5/2013 for a sum amount pertaining to the wrongful death proceeds. What can we do to get our father a headstone.

ANSWER: Juanita

Sorry your family is going through all of this.

The first question is "Who is the person registered at the cemetery as the one having the interment right?" In other words, who owns the grave?  Is it his wife or your Mother, a sibling of his or someone else? (Assuming this is a second marriage).  Usually the person who is the owner of the interment right at the cemetery can direct whether a headstone can be placed on the grave or not.  My advice would be to contact the cemetery about their policy on this or if the laws in the state where the cemetery is located has anything to say about this situation.

I hope this helps,

Erin Phelps

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank you. I'm the daughter of my father first marriage, but its the kids from the first and second marriage that's been trying to get his headstone. His third wife owned the plot. I went to the cemetery already and I was told that she would have to place the headstone.


If the cemetery says that his wife owned the plot and would have to been the one to authorize the headstone, then, unfortunately that's how it is.  If you and your siblings are willing to pay for the headstone, maybe she would allow you to do this.  


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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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