FROM: U.S. FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION
Funeral Home Settles FTC Charges It Violated the Funeral Rule
An Ohio funeral home operator has agreed to pay a civil penalty to settle Federal Trade Commission charges for violating the agency’s Funeral Rule, which requires funeral providers to provide information consumers need to compare prices and buy only the funeral services and goods they want.
At the FTC’s request, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio filed allegations against Larry S. Glickler, doing business as Bradford-Connelly & Glickler Funeral Home, for failing to provide consumers, in a timely manner, with an itemized general price list at the beginning of an in-person discussion about funeral arrangements; a casket price list at the beginning of any discussion about caskets; and an outer burial container price list at the beginning of any discussion about outer burial containers, as required by the Funeral Rule.
The FTC conducts undercover inspections every year to ensure that funeral homes are complying with the Funeral Rule, which gives consumers important rights when making funeral arrangements. The Rule, issued in 1984, requires funeral homes to provide consumers with itemized price lists at the start of any in-person discussions of funeral arrangements, caskets, and/or outer burial containers. It also requires funeral homes to provide price information by telephone on request, and it prohibits funeral homes from requiring consumers to buy any item, such as a casket, as a condition of obtaining any other funeral good or service.
The consent decree requires Glickler to pay a $6,500 civil penalty, and permanently prohibits him from violating the Funeral Rule.
For more information about the Funeral Rule, read Shopping for Funeral Services and Complying with the Funeral Rule.
The Commission vote to authorize the filing of the civil penalty complaint and approve the proposed consent decree was 5-0. The United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio filed the complaint and proposed consent decree on behalf of the Commission in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio.
NOTE: The Commission files a complaint when it has “reason to believe” that the law has been or is being violated and it appears to the Commission that a proceeding is in the public interest. Consent decrees have the force of law when approved and signed by the District Court judge.
The Federal Trade Commission works for consumers to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices and to provide information to help spot, stop, and avoid them.