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Funerals/Home Burial in Georgia, Seminole County

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Question
Can I bury my mother on my private land and not deem it a cemetery but a Family Lot? I live on this land.

Answer
There are no state laws in GA that specifically permit or prohibit home burial. But you should check with the local zoning folks. Bibb County went a little crazy over home burials and passed all kinds of stupid and silly regulations.

If your land is rural outside the village or city limits, it will likely be permissible. The burial plot should be 150 ft. from any water supply or open water and 25 ft. from a boundary or power line. If the zoning folks agree, then draw a map of the land showing where the "family burial ground" will be and pay to have it recorded with the deed so future owners know about it.

If you want to bypass the funeral industry entirely, you should be able to download the GA chapter from the Bookstore at www.funerals.org for only $5. That will walk you thro' how to file the death certificate and get the burial transit/disposition permit.

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Lisa Carlson

Expertise

Funeral Law. Having written a 512-page book on funeral law for consumers with state-by-state information, I am very conversant with consumer rights in this regard: What are the laws on disposition of cremated remains? Is embalming required? Do I have to use a funeral home? Can I have a home wake? Is it a state law to buy a vault? I prepaid for a funeral but changed my mind. They won`t give me all my money back. What can I do? . . . If you have an immediate need for information because a death has just occurred or is about to occur, you may call me at 802-482-6021.

Experience

I have monitored the funeral industry on behalf of consumers for over 20 years. I have been a guest speaker to funeral trade organizations, consumer workshops, and social service professionals. I am regularly consulted by lawyers and legislators as well as journalists.

Organizations
Funeral Ethics Organization (www.funeralethics.org) Funeral Consumers Alliance (www.funerals.org)

Publications
Caring for Your Own Dead (1987) Caring for the Dead: Your Final Act of Love (1998) I Died Laughing: Funeral Education with a Light Touch (2001) Final Rights: Reclaiming the American Way of Death (2011) with co-author Joshua Slocum

Education/Credentials
Masters degree in Administration and Special Education

Past/Present Clients
Available as an expert witness for funeral-related court cases.

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