What is a Typical Day for a Funeral Services Director?

A funeral director provides an important personal and cultural service to the community, and many people wonder, “What is a typical day for a funeral services director?” There are several typical daily activities that a funeral director will do in their work. It is also important to keep in mind that some days will be busier than others, and funeral directors may need to work evenings and weekends in order to accommodate their clients’ situations.

Provide Information About Funeral Services

If a person did not pre-plan their funeral, the funeral services director will need to meet with the deceased’s family or friends in order to plan the funeral. The director will provide information about the options, such as cremation, entombment or burial. They may provide additional information about options related to each type of funeral, such as the types of caskets for a burial or the types of urns for a cremation. The family may also be provided with information about gravestones, monuments and markers. Information about visitation and celebration of life services will also be provided by the funeral services director. Once the family chooses a burial plan, the funeral services director implements it.

Counsel Grieving Family Members

In addition to providing information to people who want to pre-plan a funeral or who need to plan the funeral of a family member, a funeral services director often acts as a counselor to surviving friends and family members. They listen to the feelings and thoughts that the family wants to share. In many cases, they can help lessen the stress by providing additional grief resources. As a part of this, they work with the family to write the obituary and send it to local media for publication.

Handle the Body of the Deceased

Once the funeral services director receives the preferences of the family members, they begin to handle the body of the deceased. This might involve collecting the body from the hospital, county morgue or other place of death, such as the deceased’s home. They prepare the body for visitation, cremation or burial. Some funeral services directors perform services that are in accordance with certain religious practices, such as the ritual washing of the body with family members or burial within 24 hours of death. They may work with the family in order to choose the clothes or special items with which the deceased is buried.

File Legal Paperwork

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, another part of the typical day of a funeral services director is filing the legal paperwork required by the local authorities for issuing a death certificate. This must be done within a certain amount of time of the deceased’s passing. Getting this paperwork filed allows the estate to go to probate and ensures that any survivors can file for appropriate Social Security, Veteran’s Affairs or pension benefits and life insurance policy payouts.

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Funeral services directors may work irregular hours, and they also need to work holidays and weekends. Their work involves assisting people who are under emotional duress and a lot of stress, and some of their meetings with clients may be more time-consuming than expected. Understanding what is a typical day for a funeral services director could help a person know if this is the right career for their skills and personality.