What is Cremation Society of Illinois?
This is currently the only exclusive cremation society in Illinois. Society members come from all social, religious, and economic backgrounds, finding unity in their mutual attraction to the simplicity of the cremation rite. They choose to dispense with costly and unnecessary pomp associated with traditional funerals to the dignified disposition at the time of death.
Our membership plan allows families to make all arrangements in advance, thereby relieving survivors of the need to make urgent decisions while experiencing grief. Preplanning provides families with complete peace of mind, both emotionally and financially.
At the time of death, our counselors are available to assist the needs of your survivors by arranging memorial services, filing newspaper obituaries, notifying social security and applying for VA benefits.
Most Society members are not only attracted to the purity and dignity of this rite but are also concerned citizens who look toward the future and the eventual scarcity of land. They also believe that the thousands of dollars saved in funeral costs can be put to a much more meaningful use through bequests to children or grandchildren - or perhaps left in a memoriam to the decedent's favorite charity as a continuation of his or her efforts to build a better tomorrow.
Is Cremation Society licensed by the State of Illinois?
Yes. All directors at Cremation Society of Illinois are licensed by the State of Illinois. We are also licensed by the Illinois Comptroller for accepting pre-arrangement funds.
What happens when the passing occurs?
The most important thing is to notify Cremation Society of Illinois once the death has occured. The deceased is transferred into our care until the death certificate can be signed by the attending physician or medical examiner. After the certificate has been filed with the county and the cremation permit has been secured, the cremation is completed. Our time frame is usually 3-5 business days. Your loved one never leaves our care.
If this is not the type of service I want, can Cremation Society of Illinois be of any assistance?
Yes. Our counselors have information regarding traditional funeral services with a rental casket followed by cremation, water cremation, traditional funeral services followed by earth burial and information on caskets and burial vaults. If you are concerned about funeral cost, in some cases we could save you thousands of dollars. We also work with the Anatomical Gift Association (AGA), if your wishes are to donate your body to science.
May I change my instructions in the future?
Yes. You may change any instructions you wish, just by notifying us in writing.
What does it mean to become a member of Cremation Society of Illinois?
Becoming a member means making your wishes known. By simply filling out our registration form and paying a one-time fee of $20 (single) or $30 (couple), taking these steps gets your information on file and also gives you a discount on the cost of cremation. Once registered, you receive wallet sized membership cards.
You can then choose to pay for your cremation services, locking in the price of $1,795*. Your money gets placed safely in a trust that is regulated the the State comptroller, per Illinois law.
What is the cost of the cremation service?
When you become a member and pay in advance the price is $1,795* If arrangments were not made in advance the price is $1,945*.
Is your price of $1,795* for cremation service good for the entire state of Illinois?
Yes. Cremation Society of Illinois offers services to the entire state at one price. However, there is an additional transportation charge of $3.00 per mile one way driven in excess of 30 miles from any of our locations.
May I pre-pay the Cremation cost of $1,795*?
Yes. Once paid, your direct cremation services is guaranteed. Your funds (50% by law) are placed in a trust/insurance account in a federally insured institution. The account is between the Society and you. At the time of passing, the Society retains the principal plus interest, in consideration for your lifetime guarantee. The cost for the direct cremation service does not include items such as an urn, cremation container, death certificates or other services or merchandise.
You can pre-pay online or call any of our locations to schedule an appointment with a prearrangement counselor.
Is this trust fund refundable?
Yes. In accordance with Illinois State Law, funds are placed in trust accounts. Your trust is refundable at any time, with written, signed notice, provided it has not been made irrevocable for public assistance reasons.
Do Social Security and Veterans' benefits apply to the Cremation Society services?
Yes, there are certain decedents whose heirs may be eligible for Social Security benefits or for Veteran's benefits. Our counselors are available to explain the regulations pertaining to eligibility for these death benefits.
Can I witness the Cremation?
Yes. Because we own and operate our own crematon equipment, we can make the experience unique and personal. Many times, families choose to be present when the cremation occurs. We can also provide private family viewings or assist with planning personalized memorial services.
What happens if the death occurs while on vacation out of state?
We offer pre-paid travel protection plans on a Nationwide and Worldwide level (non-refundable and in addition to the membership and direct cremation fee). We want you to be protected whenever you may need us. Our longtime membership with the Cremation Association of North America has given us contacts throughout the country who follow similar business prectices as Cremation Society of Illinois. This relationship allows Cremation Society of Illinois to take care of the cremation service wherever the death occurs, and helps prevent families from incurring additonal costs.
Why do people choose cremation?
According to the Cremation Association of North America, the rate of cremation in Illinois rose above 50% in 2014. It is the new tradition. Some want the lessen their carbon footprint while others find the choice more economical. It has always been Cremation Society's mission to provide a professional and affordable cremation experience with dignity, integrity and compassion.
Does the body have to be embalmed?
No. Our modern facilities with proper refrigeration eliminate the need to embalm. However, embalming will need to take place if you are having a public/private viewing or visitation service. If a public viewing is not your choice, Cremation Society of Illinois offers many other options for memorialization.
Is embalming required prior to Cremation?
Absolutely not and it is against the law for a funeral home to tell you otherwise.
What is an Urn?
Once the cremation is complete the cremated remains are placed in an urn of your choice. We have a large selection - cemetery approved, biodegradable, scattering or decorative. At times, families supply their own.
What is a Cremation Container?
The State of Illinois requires the deceased be placed in a cremation container for the cremation process (additonal fees apply). Our cremation containers vary from thick corrugated cardboard to viewing appropriate.
Is cremation accepted by all religions?
Today most religions allow cremation except for Orthodox Jewish, Islamic, Eastern Orthodox, Greek Orthodox and a few Fundamentalist Christian faiths. The Catholic Church accepts cremation as long as it is not chosen for reasons which are contrary to Christian teachings.
Can an urn be brought into church?
Though many religions allow for the urn to be present during the service, it is advised that you consult with your individual church. If the family is planning on a memorial service, we encourage the cremated remains be present as it provides a focal point for the service.
Do you assist with specific religious customs/requests regarding cremation?
We receive many religious requests by the families we serve. Some requests deal with being present during the cremation process. Because we own and operate our own equipment, we can work with our families and tailor the cremation experience to their specific beliefs.
Do people choose cremation only to save money?
While some people select cremation for economy, many choose this option for other reasons. The simplicity and dignity of cremation, environmental concerns, and the flexibility cremation affords in ceremony planning and final disposition all add to its increasing popularity.
Don't most funeral homes have a crematory?
Most funeral homes subcontract this delicate procedure out to a third party provider in another location where the funeral home has little or no control over the crematory's operating procedures. Often, the family incurs additional transportation expenses and needless delay. By contrast, we operate our own crematories by our fully certified and highly trained staff. Our crematory equipment is state-of-the-art and meets or exceeds every state and local operating requirement. Our crematories are open for inspection any time during normal business hours.
Are there any special benefits for veterans?
Benefits may be available for veterans' families who pass away in a VA hospital, or a VA contracted health care facility. Once our financial requirements are satisfied, we file for the VA reimbursement to be sent directly to the entitled family member. We obtain the government provided flag for the next of kin and make arrangements for the cremated remains to be interred in a National Cemetery. The cemetery provides the grave, cost to open and close the grave, and the head stone. Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery in Elwood, IL is the closest National Cemetery to the Chicago-Metropolitan area. If the Veteran is not interred in a National Cemetery, they are still entitled to Military Honors, which may take place at another cemetery or place of service, such as a church. If they bury the cremated remains in a non-military cemetery the government head stone is still available; we make the arrangements for the family as well.
Is there any assistance for families on welfare?
If the deceased is on Public Aid, we will be happy to submit the claim to Public Aid for reimbursement to family for payment of our basic cremation services once our financial obligation is met. The Public Aid Office makes the final decision as to if the deceased is eligible. The family will be reimbursed for the monies they paid for the cremation if they meet the eligibility requirements direct from Public Aid.