Frequent Questions


Click on the questions below to reveal each respective answer.

Funerals fill an important role for those mourning the loss of a loved one. By providing surviving family and friends with an atmosphere of care and support in which to share thoughts and feelings about death, funerals are the first step in the healing process. It is the traditional way to recognize the finality of death. Funerals are recognized rituals for the living to show their respect for the dead and to help survivors begin the grieving process.

You can have a full funeral service even for those choosing cremation. Planning a personalized ceremony or service will help begin the healing process. Overcoming the pain is never easy, but a meaningful funeral or tribute will help.

Helping others cope with the emotional upheaval of a major loss is a funeral director’s most important job but beyond their supportive nature, they are also required to take care of all the logistics concerning the funeral service. From the moment of first contact, funeral directors and their supportive staff are dedicated to serving your family in a time of need on a 24 hour basis.

This begins with the initial contact of arranging transportation of your loved one into our care, no matter if it is day or night. We also ensure that the appropriate documentation is completed along with this transfer.

When the family meets with us for arrangements, the funeral director will guide you through the decision making process of how you best want to honour your loved one. We then act on your behalf in contacting the applicable service providers such as the church, clergy, musicians, hall, caterer, and cemetery. We also proceed in preparing the necessary supplies that will be needed for the service such as the casket / urn, items of personalization (casket corners, plaques, jewellery, photo enlargements, floral arrangements, candles, slideshows, recorded music, memorabilia), stationary, guest book, and monuments (both lettering and installation). We will also prepare notifications to be placed in the town. An obituary notice will also be placed on our website and can also be placed with newspapers of the families choosing

We also prepare your loved one for their final disposition. All individuals are treated with respect and we proceed with bathing, dressing, hairstyling and placing the individual in the selected casket. Pending the disposition choice, embalming and cosmetics will take place and / or transfer to the crematorium.

We complete the applicable paperwork; notifying Canada Pension Plan, receiving the death certificate, registering the death with Vital Statistics, submitting the Burial Permits, providing an estimate, submitting payment and honorariums to applicable facilities and individuals, assistance in completing Canada Pension Plan Death Benefit, as well as Survivorship Benefit if applicable, providing a final bill of expenses, providing Funeral Directors Statements of Death (FDSD) and monument permits. 

The first step is to select a funeral home. Notify them of where the death has taken place at. They will arrange for your loved one to be transferred into their care. To contact Lakeland Funeral Home, please call 780.853.5100 if you have not already done so. We will set up an arrangement time that works best for your family.

To prepare for arrangements, we will be asking you the following:

  • Vital Statistics
  • Their full legal name:
  • Usual residence:
  • Name of their spouse:
  • Their occupation, before retirement: 
  • Their Birthdate:
  • Their Birthplace:
  • Name of their father:
  • Father’s birthplace:
  • Name of their mother (maiden name):
  • Mother’s birthplace:
  • Their Social Insurance Number:
  • Their Alberta Health Care Number: 

Town Notices: The funeral home produces “town cards” that we disperse throughout Fort Macleod and or Pincher Creek and applicable communities. For this we ask that you bring a photo of the individual and the family tree information concerning who the deceased would be survived by and predeceased by. We will also ask if there is a preferred charity for memorial donations.

Obituary: We can submit newspaper obituaries upon your family’s request. 

Disposition: Please consider if you would like to proceed with cremation or burial.

Viewing: Discuss if you would like to do a viewing. Select clothing that you would like for them to be dressed in. Also, we require permission to proceed with embalming, if applicable.

Service: Discuss the location, preferable date and time of service, clergy / officiant (if there is not a preferred member of clergy, we do have individuals within our funeral home who are able to officiate services and adjust the service to your preferences), eulogy speaker, any other forms of personalized tribute (musical, scripture reading, poems, personal memories, open mike), hymn / music selections (average three song selections), slideshow / photo tribute (can be completed by our facility), memorabilia, pallbearers, cemetery location, reception location, preferred caterer, and menu preferences. 

If you request immediate assistance, yes. If the family wishes to spend a short time with the deceased to say good-bye, that’s perfectly acceptable. Your funeral director will come when your time is right, keeping travel time in mind.

Burial in a casket is the most common method of Funeral Services in Canada. Cremation is selected because it allows for the memorial service to be held at a more convenient time in the future when relatives and friends can come together.

A funeral service followed by cremation need not be any different from a funeral service followed by a burial. Usually, cremated remains are placed in urn before being committed to a final resting place. The urn may be buried, placed in a columbarium, or interred in a special urn garden that many cemeteries provide for cremated remains. The remains may also be scattered, according to provincial law.

Viewing is a part of many cultural and ethnic traditions. Many grief specialists believe that viewing aids the grief process by helping the bereaved recognize the reality of death. Viewing is encouraged for children, as long as the process is explained and the activity is voluntary.

The purpose of embalming is to sanitize and preserve the body, as well as enhance the appearance of the deceased. This provides the opportunity to extend the time between the time of passing until the final disposition.

Embalming is not necessary except in certain special cases, embalming is not required by law. Embalming may be necessary, however, if you select certain funeral arrangements, such as a funeral with viewing. If you do not want embalming, you usually have the right to choose an arrangement that does not require you to pay for it, such as cremation or immediate burial."

When compared to other major life events like births and weddings, funerals are not expensive. A wedding costs at least three times as much; but because it is a happy event, wedding costs are rarely criticized. A funeral home is a 24-hour, labor-intensive business, with extensive facilities (viewing rooms, chapel, hearses, etc.), these expenses must be factored into the cost of a funeral.

Additionally, the cost of a funeral includes not only merchandise, like caskets, but the services of a funeral director in making arrangements; filing appropriate forms; dealing with doctors, ministers, florists, newspapers and others; and seeing to all the necessary details. Funeral directors look upon their profession as a service, but it is also a business. Like any business, funeral homes must make a profit to exist.

It really depends entirely on how you wish to commemorate a life. One of the advantages of cremation is that it provides you with increased flexibility when you make your funeral and cemetery arrangements. You might, for example, choose to have a funeral service before the cremation; a memorial service at the time of cremation or after the cremation with the urn present; or a committal service at the final disposition of cremated remains. Funeral or memorial services can be held in a place of worship, a funeral home or community hall.

Cremated remains can be buried, placed in a columbarium niche, stored / displayed at home, or scattered. As there is the possibility of distributing the cremated remains in portions, it provides many opportunities to personalize your experience.

Burial can be done in an existing grave/s in which other family members have been buried or a new plot can be purchased.

Columbarium niches are available with the Public Cemetery with the Town of Vermilion. The niches available can store two urns and include engraving of the names on the niche front.

Cremated remains can be released to the family as well. As such, they can proceed in storage of the urn or have the option to scatter. Scattering of cremated remains is usually permitted on Crown and publicly owned lands but permission must be obtained ahead of time in all cases. In national parks, scattering cremated remains in water is prohibited, but remains can be “cast to the wind”. In provincial parks, forests and wilderness areas scattering is allowed anywhere, but permission is required to scatter remains over lakes and rivers.

Some cemeteries have special areas where cremated remains can be scattered and individual plaques may be placed there.

There are several important issues to consider before scattering, as scattering of cremated remains is permanent and cannot be reversed.

  • There is no permanent place to identify with the deceased and if done on private property, it may be sold in future years.
  • There may be restrictions at parks, lakes, and such places and they may not be accessible in the future. There is also no guarantee that the location will be in the same condition in the future.
  • There is likely not a way to place a marker to identify the scattering location for future generations.

Keepsake urns and memorial jewellery are a common practice of providing multiple individuals with their own amount of cremated remains. There are some unique methods of personalizing your memorialization as well. These possibilities include: creating a memorial tree, placing into fireworks, placing in helium balloons, creating a diamond, hand blown glass, glass paperweights, used in tattoo ink, or used in paintings.


You might choose ground burial of the urn. If so, you may usually choose either a bronze memorial or monument. Cremation niches in columbariums are also available at many cemeteries. They offer the beauty of a mausoleum setting with the benefits of above ground placement of remains. Many cemeteries also offer scattering gardens. This area of a cemetery offers the peacefulness of a serene garden where family and friends can come and reflect.

If you wish to have your ashes scattered somewhere, it is important to discuss your wishes to be scattered ahead of time with the person or persons who will actually have to do the cremation ashes scattering ceremony, as they might want to let your funeral professional assist in the scattering ceremony. Funeral directors can also be very helpful in creating a meaningful and personal ash scattering ceremony that they will customize to fit your families specific desires. The services can be as formal or informal as you like. Scattering services can also be public or private. Again, it is advisable to check for local regulations regarding scattering in a public place-your funeral director can help you with this.

Yes — Depending upon the cemetery's policy, you may be able to save a grave space by having the cremains buried on top of the casketed remains of your spouse, or utilize the space provided next to him/her. Many cemeteries allow for multiple cremated remains to be interred in a single grave space.

Uncertainty about income tax issues can add to the stress experienced from the death of a spouse. You should meet with your family attorney and/or tax advisor as soon as possible to review your particular tax and estate circumstances. Bring a detailed list of your questions to the meeting. 

  • There are a number of options available, including:

    • Canada Pension Death Benefit/Survivors Benefit
    • Last Post Fund
    • Alberta Income Support Services
    • Band Members Benefits

    Please talk to your Funeral Director to see if you qualify for any benefits that may be available. 


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