(708) 422-2700

6116 West 111th Street
Chicago Ridge, Illinois

Frequently Asked Questions

Funeral Service Questions

What are the benefits of a funeral?

After a death, the funeral service is the first step to begin the healing process. Funerals provide family members and friends with a caring and positive atmosphere to acknowledge the death of a loved one and celebrate their life. Attending a funeral service provides many benefits which may include:

  • Establishing a social support system for the family
  • Helping a family understand death is final and a part of life
  • Letting families know that expressing pain and sadness over a loss is natural
  • Reaffirming one's relationship with the person who died
  • Sharing thoughts and feeling about the deceased
  • Providing a time to say good-bye and celebrate a life lived

What do I do? Iíve never had to arrange a funeral before.

This will not be an easy time, but rest assured, the Curley family is here to help guide you and your family through this uncertain process. Curley Funeral Home offers tips for smart planning:

  • Be well informed, feel free to ask questions
  • Be ready to organize details and make decisions
  • Plan a personalized and meaningful ceremony to celebrate a life lived

Why have a public viewing?

Many grief specialists believe that viewing assists the healing process by helping the family and friends accept the reality of death. We strongly recommend viewing as part of any funeral service for the family whether traditional burial or cremation is the chosen method of disposition.

Preplanning Questions

Can my pre-arrangements be made on the Internet?

Yes. Curley Funeral Home provides an online service on its website so that people may make their full arrangements over the Internet. In some cases, people may still need to visit the funeral home to select their funeral merchandise (casket, vault, or urn) and sign some forms in order to finalize their arrangements and ensure funding.

Can my family change my pre-arrangements?

Yes. The majority of families stay with the decisions in a pre-arrangement contract; however, the law goes with the living, so the family can make changes to your pre-arrangements.

Can I pre-arrange a cremation?

Yes. Recording your wishes in a pre-arrangement will help to ensure that your desire of cremation will be carried out. In Illinois, the law still goes with the living. At your death, the immediate next-of-kin or all equal next-of-kinís must also agree and sign the required authorizations in order to complete the cremation process.

What are the benefits of pre-paying for funeral services?

The most common reason that a person may choose to pre-pay the funeral expenses is that they receive the peace of mind in knowing their family will not be inconvenienced or burdened with funeral costs at an already difficult time. Secondly, Curley Funeral Home offers an inflation proof pre-arrangement plan that allows a person to pay in full at todayís prices. You will then receive the services and funeral merchandise that was paid for at yesterdayís prices at no additional cost to your family. The last benefit is that funds placed in a pre-arrangement contract with us may also be designated as irrevocable, thus protecting this asset from any nursing home, hospital, federal and / or state agency.

Will the government help cover the costs of funeral expenses?

No. The federal government will not pay towards a burial of a United States Citizen. The Social Security Administration will pay up to $255.00 in a one time payment to a surviving spouse. This payment is not guaranteed by the government and is only payable to a surviving spouse. If you think that you are entitled to the Social Security Survivor Death Benefit or additional Social Security Benefits, you can contact the Social Security Administration Office at (800) 772-1213. CFH staff will notify the Social Security Administration of each death for a family that we serve.

Does the government pay for Veterans Funeral Services?

No. The Veterans Administration will provide an honorably discharged veteran a grave marker and a flag for burial. If burial is in a Veterans Administration Cemetery, then the government will cover the cost of the burial space, opening & closing of the grave and the cost of a minimum outer burial container. Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery in Elwood, Illinois is the closest VA cemetery. We will assist your family in completing the necessary forms in order to obtain the veterans benefits to which you are entitled. Info at

Embalming Questions

Is embalming required by law?

No. Most states, however, require embalming when death is caused by a reportable contagious disease, when the deceased is to be transported from one state to another by common carrier, or when final disposition is not to be made within a prescribed number of hours. CFH does require that a body be embalmed when it will be presented for a visitation and/or funeral service with a public viewing of the deceased.

Cremation Questions

Is cremation a substitute for a funeral?

No. Cremation is simply the chosen method of disposition of a human body. With more people choosing cremation, it is important to understand the many options for a funeral service. This does not mean that aspects of traditional funeral services have to be discarded. Even with cremation, a meaningful memorial that is personalized to reflect the life of the deceased could include:

  • A visitation prior to the service
  • An open or closed casket
  • Special music and / or a meaningful video tribute
  • A ceremony at the funeral chapel or local church
  • Participation by friends and family

Commonly, cremated remains are placed in an urn and buried in a family burial plot. Cremation also gives families the option to scatter the remains. This can be done in a place that was special to the person. When choosing scattering, we strongly suggest that a family bury a portion of the cremated remains so that a marker can be erected. This permanent burial location will help to celebrate a life lived and give survivors a place to visit on special occasions.

Is it possible to have a full funeral service even when cremation is chosen?

Yes. Curley Funeral Home offers a full line of cremation caskets that allows for the body to be present for a funeral service with cremation to follow. It is actually more common to have a full funeral service when cremation is the chosen method of disposition. The importance of the funeral service is in providing a social gathering to help the bereaved begin the healing process.

In Association with T. P. Kerrigan Funeral Directors

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