5 End-of-Life Legal Terms You Need to Know

When a beloved friend or family member is reaching the end of his or her life, he or she will probably require the assistance of trusted loved ones to finalize their affairs and estate. End-of-life planning can include helping a loved one draft a will, deciding where and how his or her assets will be divided after death, and planning for a funeral and cremation in Philadelphia after he or she has passed on. You may encounter a number of confusing legal terms that can bog down your understanding of your loved one’s estate planning, especially if you are the primary contact who is planning and managing your loved one’s end-of-life care. Read on to learn five common end-of-life legal terms that you’ll need to know.

  • Power of attorney. The power of attorney is a legal document that allows one person to legally act on behalf of another when it comes to financial matters and estate planning. Only someone who is legally competent and of sound mind may sign a power of attorney.
  • Living will. A living will is an advance directive that someone receiving end-of-life care may sign to indicate his or her wishes in regards to medical care should he or she lose his or her ability to communicate. A living will may also be referred to as a “medical directive” or a “directive to physicians.”
  • Medical power of attorney. Similar to a standard Power of Attorney, a Medical Power of Attorney is a document that grants a trusted friend or loved one the power to make medical decisions in the event that the person in question is unable to communicate.
  • Do-not-resuscitate (DNR) order. A DNR order is an order written and signed by a physician that indicates that a person does not wish to undergo CPR in the event that their heart or breathing stops. A DNR order may be requested by a person who is of sound mind and legal decision-making skills or by a family member or friend who has received medical power of attorney.
  • Withdrawing treatment. “Withdrawing treatment” is a term used when life-saving or sustaining treatments are being discontinued, usually because the patient is in an unbearable amount of pain or the treatments are no longer helping.

McCafferty Funeral Home is a funeral provider and crematorium in Philadelphia that can help you understand end-of-life treatment and care. Call us at 215-531-5014 for immediate attention and assistance.

How to Buy Funeral Flowers: 3 Etiquette Points You Should Know

Sending a gift of flowers to a friend who has lost a loved one is a simple and affectionate way to say “I care, and I’m here for you.” But which flowers are best to send and when is the right time to send them? Before you choose your flowers, be sure to consider these three quick etiquette tips for sympathy bouquets and arrangements.

 

  • There are a few flowers that are traditionally reserved for the family of the deceased to buy and place on the casket as a final goodbye. These typically include casket sprays and wreaths. Avoid purchasing these flowers if you are not closely related to the deceased and instead opt for an arrangement of white, pale purple, or pale green flowers. Lilies, pale carnations, and gladioli flowers are all appropriate and traditional choices that will tell the family of the deceased that you care.

 

  • Are you looking to pay your respects without spending too much money? Funeral plants like the poinsettia or peace lily provide an inexpensive and appropriate option that can be displayed at the service. If you are attending the ceremony, you may also want to consider pooling money together with other guests to purchase an arrangement before the service.

 

  • All bouquets and flower arrangements should be sent to the funeral home in Philadelphia prior to the service so they can be properly arranged and set to be displayed. If you are unable to attend the service and would still like to show your sympathy, you should send a funeral gift basket or flower arrangement to the family member you are closest to.


If you’ve recently lost a loved one, McCafferty Funeral Home’s inexpensive funeral home in Philadelphia is here to help support you in your time of need while honoring the life of your friend or family member. Our team is standing by at all hours to give you the attention and services you need — just give us a call at 215-531-5014 for an immediate connection.

What To Consider When Planning a Cremation

At the time of losing someone you love, it is imperative that you are assured they will be handled with the utmost care. At McCafferty Funeral Home, no one is more suited to take care of your loved one than our staff of compassionate and considerate personnel. As unfortunate as funerals are, their expenses and arrangements must be dealt with in a timely and organized manner. McCafferty Funeral Home offers affordable cremation services in Montgomery County for those bearing the weight of funeral expenses.

Here is what you should consider when planning a cremation:

Losing someone you love can be a confusing and extremely difficult time. These tragedies often occur when you least expect it, leaving you with very little time for arrangements to be made. Read below to review the various aspects that need consideration during cremation planning.

You have the option of having a memorial service before cremation

If you wish for family members and friends to be able to see their loved one prior to cremation, you have the option to organize a viewing. For many family members, coping with the death of a loved one can be unbearable, with the reality of the situation still unclear. Having a time set aside for a viewing allows people to say their final “goodbyes” and pay their last respects.

Transporting Remains

At such a difficult and often unexpected time, provisions may need to be made. Transporting your loved one to another location is a manageable option if necessary. With a few things in mind, it is possible to transport the cremated remains by mail or by air. There will be paperwork to fill out and proper certification and verifications required for transportation. To allow smooth security checkpoint run-throughs with TSA, be sure to check your airline for any requirements and/or restrictions.

Burying/Interment

There are many options when interring a cremated body. The remains may be placed in a columbarium, an existing burial space, a small plot for cremated remains, or an urn garden. They may also be situated in a mausoleum. It is also common to arrange cremated remains to be placed in memorial items, such as cremation benches, grave markers, memorial stones, etc.

You May Keep The Urn At Home

Choosing the right urn is typically based on functionality and design. Some people choose to put biodegradable urns out to sea, while others keep them in their home. While some prefer to contain the cremated remains into one urn, they can also be split and divided amongst family members into multiple keepsake urns.

Scattering of Remains

Scattering cremated remains is a popular option for memorializing loved ones. If you choose to scatter cremated remains, locations for such method are endless. The remains can be scattered on either private or public land. Most often, remains are spread into a body of water, cemetery, or park.

There are many things to consider when planning a cremation, but the process does not have to be overwhelming — experiencing the death of a loved one is hard enough as it is. Choosing the right service provider is not only important for the memory of your loved one, but also for grief-stricken family members and friends, as a ceremony is an important part of the healing process.

For affordable cremation in Montgomery County, visit McCafferty Funeral Home and let us provide your loved one with an honorable service that will be remembered for years to come. At McCafferty Funeral Home, we want your experience to be handled with comfort and care. Our staff wishes nothing more than to alleviate the added stress that comes with funeral arrangements. For more information, please call us at 215-624-4200 or 215-432-8339. We are available 24/7 for your convenience.

Considering Hospice Care: When is it Time to Call?

No one wants to face the possibility that a loved one may not be able to take care of his or herself in old age. Hospice care programs in Philadelphia provide older men and women with an increased level of supervision, comfort, and care during the end of life. But how can you tell when it’s time to make the call to a hospice care provider? If you’ve noticed any of the following symptoms in your loved one, he or she may be in need of hospice care.

  • An increase in memory lapses. Everyone has moments when they forget their car keys or leave the laundry in the washing machine a little too long. However, if you’ve noticed that your loved one frequently forgets important details (like if they have taken their medication or how to operate a common appliance), your loved one may be safer living in a hospice facility.
  • An increase in falls. As we age, falls can become costlier to our health. An older man or woman who falls alone in their home can be at serious risk of breaking a bone or being unable to regain their composure. If your loved one is falling more often, the transition to hospice care can help avoid the risk of deadly accidents.
  • Drastic, unintentional weight-loss. Sudden weight-loss in the elderly can be a symptom of a number of conditions ranging from cancer to Alzheimer’s disease. If your loved one has lost a large amount of weight and they do not know why, consult with their doctor and consider making the transition to a hospice care facility.

Planning for the end of life can be heartbreaking and stressful, but you don’t have to handle it alone. McCafferty Funeral Home can help men and women find the Philadelphia hospice program that is right for their loved one. Give us a call today at 215-531-5014 for immediate assistance.

Five Fascinating Funeral Traditions From Around the Globe

Here in Pennsylvania, we know exactly what to expect from a funeral procession. Solemn funerals and cheap cremations in Montgomery County are the norm. However, different cultures each have their own unique way to celebrate the end of life. Read on to learn more about five fascinating funeral traditions that vary wildly from the burials and cremations we typically see.

  • South Korean burial beads. After a law passed in 2000 required South Korean families to remove the graves of their loved ones after 60 years (due to dwindling graveyard space), cremations and nontraditional end-of-life celebrations gained popularity. In particular, companies compressing remains into vividly-colored “death beads” have popped up, allowing customers an easy and beautiful way to honor their loved one within the home.
  • Tibetan sky burials. Vajrayana Buddhists in Tibet believe that when a loved one passes on, the body becomes an empty vessel and the soul moves onto the afterlife. To make the transition easier, Tibetans cut the body into pieces and hold a ceremony atop a mountain — a practice that has been done for thousands of years.
  • Eccentric Balinese cremation ceremonies. Cremations on the Hindu island of Bali vary wildly from the low cost cremation services in Montgomery County we’ve come to know. According to Balinese tradition, the cremation process sets the soul free. The cremation processions in Bali often take place inside ornate wooden statues of animals or palaces, signifying the transition into the glory of the afterlife.
  • Ghana’s “fantasy coffins.” In the West African nation of Ghana, “fantasy coffins” that represent something the deceased loved in life have become wildly popular. From a gigantic green fish representing the life of a fisherman who loved the sea to a Mercedes Benz coffin for a successful businessman, funerals in Ghana often feature some crazy coffins.
  • American “reef balls.” There are even some new funeral traditions gaining speed right here in the United States. One company, Eternal Reefs, offers men and women the opportunity to live on after their death by compressing remains into a sphere that is then attached to a coral bed in the ocean. The so-called “reef ball” then provides an environmentally-friendly home for sea creatures.

If you have a loved one that has passed on, McCafferty Funeral Home is here to help you honor their memory. Call us anytime at 215-531-5014 for immediate attention.