Is there any scam worse than a funeral scam?

Is there any scam worse than a funeral scam?

By Greg Collier

We’re never in a more vulnerable state than after the loss of a loved one. It’s even worse when the loss was unexpected. Nobody ever wants to arrange a funeral. Unfortunately, for most of us, it’s an inevitability. Whether it’s a spouse, a parent, or even a child, no one ever wants to have to discuss the financial details of having their loved one laid to rest. For scammers, this is just another opportunity for them to use emotional manipulation to trick grieving families into giving them money.

In Georgia, a family almost lost $14,000 after falling prey to a funeral scammer. Some scammers keep an eye on the local obituaries. When someone passes and their obituary is published, scammers will pose as employees of the funeral home. The scammers will tell their victims there’s been an error in billing and the victim needs to pay more money. They’ll often show up at the victim’s home to collect the payment in cash or check.

In the Georgia case, the suspects were arrested after they had difficulty trying to cash the check. In previous instances of this scam, we’ve seen scammers make it appear as if they were holding the remains of the deceased hostage until the victim made a payment.

In order to protect yourself from such a scam, it is recommended to get an itemized bill from the funeral home that shows exactly how much services cost.

Whenever you receive a call from someone requesting an unexpected payment, it is crucial to verify their claims. Do not automatically assume the call is authentic merely based on the displayed caller ID. Take the initiative to contact the business or agency directly, as they will provide guidance regarding the legitimacy of the caller’s demands.