Funeral Home Employee Convicted Of Embezzlement - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Funeral Home Employee Convicted Of Embezzlement

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IONIA COUNTY, MI (WLNS) - Funeral directors say you should be asking a lot of questions when planning a funeral. This comes after 40-year-old Marti Schrauben was found guilty Monday of embezzling close to half a million dollars over three years from an Ionia County funeral home.

6 News Nick Perreault talks about how you can make sure your money is going to the right place.

From urns to caskets to prices, Palmer Bush President Allen Jensen says they're plenty of questions you should ask when planning for a funeral.

"In about 20 percent of the cases that we handle we see people who may want to take care of same arrangements that they just got done for a loved one,” said Allen Jensen, President Palmer Bush Funeral Homes.

Jensen says you should start by researching the funeral home itself.

"They should be provided with a general price list. This is a Federal Trade Commission rule that exists within our profession.”

Even if you've known the home for years you should check with licensing and regulatory affairs to see if their license is still valid.

"They must conduct a self-audit by a CPA on an annual basis,” said Jensen.

And when you pay Jensen says, make sure you get a receipt.

"Also make sure that they get some kind of receipt from the company that is going to be the holder of the money.”

Under state law Jensen says insurance and escrow companies are required to provide you with a copy.

Now the funeral home owner here, Mike Lehman did reach out to 6 News in a statement saying that he is satisfied and pleased with the verdict against Marti Schrauben and says the funeral home has made changes since. They now have mail going to a P.O box and as well as all files including escrow statements issued through his office.

Jensen says ultimately you should check every year to make sure your money is going where it's supposed to go.
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