What Are Perpetual Care Laws?
Perpetual care laws are state regulations that govern the payments made by cemetery and columbarium owners to maintain and upkeep the grounds where the deceased are interred or where their ashes are placed. The purpose of such laws is to ensure that the cemetery and columbarium owners properly maintain and preserve the cemetery’s appearance, which honors the memory of the deceased while providing a serene and peaceful environment for the living to visit.
What Are Columbariums?
Columbariums are facilities where cremated remains are placed in urns and end up being interred in a niche or cabinet. Typically, columbariums are located in cemeteries, churches, and other places of worship. Families who choose cremation often opt for a columbarium because it is more affordable than a traditional burial option. Besides, many people find comfort in being able to visit their loved one’s columbarium niche to pay their respects and honor their memory.
Perpetual Care Laws in Tennessee
In Tennessee, the Division of Cemetery and Funeral Services oversees and enforces the state’s perpetual care laws. According to the Tennessee Code Annotated, 46-8-201, columbariums must have a perpetual care fund or an arrangement for providing perpetual care. The purpose of the perpetual care fund is to ensure that the cemetery and columbarium owners maintain the property in good condition for generations.
Tennessee Code Annotated 46-8-201 also states that the state registrar must have access to the perpetual care funds held by cemetery and columbarium owners. The registrar has the authority to conduct financial audits of the funds and certify that the perpetual care arrangements meet the state’s requirements.
How the Perpetual Care Fund Works
Cemetery and columbarium owners in Tennessee must set up a perpetual care fund or an agreement for perpetual care in compliance with the state law. The amount of the funds required depends on the total cost of the cemetery or columbarium property. The size of the property and the number of people interred or placed in the facility also play a role in determining the amount of the required funds.
The money contributed to the perpetual care fund is invested in a trust account, and the interest and returns on the investment are used to maintain and improve the cemetery or columbarium property. The fund’s investment is monitored and supervised by the state to ensure that it is being managed appropriately.
The Implications of Perpetual Care Laws to You and Your Loved Ones
Choosing a columbarium for your loved one’s final resting place is a practical and cost-effective choice. However, it is essential to make sure that the cemetery or columbarium you choose is in compliance with the state’s perpetual care laws. Research and verify that the facility you choose has a perpetual care fund or a perpetual care agreement in place.
Perpetual care laws also ensure that your loved one’s final resting place will be maintained to an appropriate standard. These laws offer peace of mind by helping to guarantee that the cemetery or columbarium property will be well-maintained and preserved. Making sure your family cemetery or columbarium has a perpetual care fund ensures that it will still be in the best condition it can be for many years to come.
Perpetual care laws are crucial in maintaining the appearance and condition of cemeteries and columbariums in Tennessee. Every cemetery and columbarium owners must comply with the Tennessee Code Annotated, which requires a perpetual care fund or an agreement for providing perpetual care. By complying with the state’s laws, the cemetery and columbarium owners ensure that the memorial property will remain cared for and preserved for generations to come. Families, caretakers, and visitors can have peace of mind knowing that cemeteries and columbariums abide by stringent regulations and that their loved ones’ final resting places will always be kept in pristine condition.