Funerals: Planning for your last day

No one likes talking about the day they will die. But let’s face it: it will happen. And it can come any time. So it’s a good idea to start planning for your funeral. Every Muslim is entitled to an Islamic funeral. Imam al-Shafi said: “The funeral prayer of a Muslim (who follows the Qiblah) is not to be abandoned irrespective of him being a righteous or a sinful (Muslim).” You might be thinking about mentioning about your funeral in your will. Don’t do that! Wills are not usually read until after the funeral. Give your preferences in writing to your attorney and family members instead. Make sure that family members know you should be buried as soon as possible. Your body should not just lie around unnecessarily.  Make sure that you will be buried in an Islamic way, as practices such as cremation are not allowed in Islam. Make sure you are aware of all costs associated with your funeral. You do not want to place a burden on your family later on. You should specify where you would like the costs to come from (savings, investments, etc.). The more information you give on your funeral, the easier the process will be. Some funeral services even provide a prepayment option. You should also consider the location of your burial. According to the European Council for Fatwa and Research, it is recommended to bury a body in the locality of your death. There are unnecessary costs and difficulties associated with transferring bodies to other places.

There are a few things to keep in mind regarding burial laws. Although most states do not require a funeral director to be appointed, some states do. Also, cemeteries have different rules regarding burial. For example, most cemeteries require a vault. Make sure that soil is spread on the bottom of the vault if your cemetery requires this.  If you choose to pre plan your funeral, make sure you receive a list of all costs associated with your burial. It is the law for cemeteries to give this information.