How Do I Know I’m Getting Back the Right Cremated Remains?

Video Transcript

From the first point of contact when we would be transferring your loved one into our care we have a very strong policy in relationship to the chain of custody. From the second we take your loved one into our care, there are forms and documents that are signed that follow along the entire process to make sure in everything in every place the person ends up going is tracked and monitored.

Answers from Other Funeral Directors Around the United States:

There is licensing that is required and crematory laws that must be followed by every operating crematory. When a body is brought to the crematory, a small numbered medical identification disk is placed with the body. This number is now associated with the name of the deceased. The disk accompanies the body throughout the cremation process and is attached to the cremated remains when returned to the family. In addition, funeral homes have identification procedures to ensure that the accurate body is being cremated.

- Abby Schilling
Funeral Director in Richfield, MN

We have a positive identification system for identifying your loved one. We use the identification provided by the facility or place of death, often a photograph provided by the family, for visual identification along with a uniquely numbered metal identification disk which is assigned to your loved one once he/she enters our care.

- Jessica Watts
Funeral Director in Jacksonville, FL

There is a process installed with every single cremation. Prior to dispatch a tag is made to identify the deceased. Upon removal of the body the tag is placed with it. Upon arrival at PCC the deceased is bagged, boxed, and relabeled. Once the necessary documents are approved we have a photo ID procedure to ensure we cremate the correct person. After cremation, the metal ID disk that accompanied the body through the cremation process is returned with the remains to the family. This entire process is documented through a chain of custody documents similar to the way a similar document would be used to follow evidence through a trial. The chain of custody documents will be returned to family with the cremated remains.

- C. A. Bankston
Funeral Director in Fort Worth, TX

Starting from the second we come into contact with the family, we attach a bracelet with the deceased’s legal name, date of birth, date of death, and, if possible, social security number on it. In addition, a chain of custody forms accompanies that person through the entire process identifying each person who has come into contact with that deceased. When cremation is about to occur an ID number is assigned, and that number is stamped on a metallic coin that accompanies that deceased into the retort (cremation chamber) and stays with the cremated remains to ensure that is the family’s loved one.

- Michael Sollitto
Funeral Director in Charlotte, NC