"With this week's study showing Americans trail 41 other countries in terms of life expectancy, death and dying are at the forefront of the news - and it's quite an uncomfortable subject for most of us," says Dr. Audri G. Lanford, Co-Director of ScamBusters.org, a public service website that has been helping people protect themselves from Internet scams since 1994.
"With an average cost including all the extras of over $ 10,000, a funeral may be one of the most expensive purchases of your life.
But if it's so uncomfortable to discuss today, imagine how difficult it will be to talk about funeral arrangements when you're in a state of shock and grief.
And that's exactly when you're most vulnerable to being scammed," adds Dr. Lanford
The funeral industry is regulated by the Federal Trade Commission
(FTC) and individual states.
The "Funeral Rule," which is enforced by the FTC
, can be a godsend to a distraught mourner.
The Rule contains a number of consumer protection measures - but they won't do the funeral service consumer any good if the consumer isn't aware of them, says Dr. Lanford
Founded by Co- Directors Audri and Jim Lanford, ScamBusters.org provides a free weekly email newsletter that shows you how to protect yourself from cunning scammers - online and offline.