Frequently Asked Questions
What is direct cremation?
A direct cremation is a disposition option in which the body is cremated in the days immediately following the death, without a wake or viewing beforehand. Direct cremation is the most economic (affordable) option for disposition.
How does the process work?
-A call to New Leaf or a visit to our website is all that is needed to start the process
– You choose your package and receive a quote, complete the online forms, and provide payment.
-We then dispatch our licensed funeral directors to transport your loved one from the place of death to our climate controlled holding facility for care and storage.
-We then register the death with the local municipality. Forms, certificates and authorizations are completed according to New York State laws before the cremation can take place.
-Once the forms and authorizations have been signed and filed with the local health department, the decedent is transferred to a third party crematory (as required by New York State law) for cremation. Usually this takes place within 3-7 days.
-The ashes are then shipped to the family or a hand delivery/pickup is arranged.
How long does the process usually take?
The overall cremation process, from first notification until the you receive the ashes, will take an average of 10–15 days
Delays happen in some cases, when local, state or federal agencies, police, county coroner, or medical examiners become involved and investigate the circumstances surrounding a death. Also, when the attending physician is delayed signing the death certificate.
You can rest assured that New Leaf will keep you informed every step of the way should a delay occur.
**Note: Should a delay in obtaining the death certificate require us to store your loved one in our care beyond the standard 3 day window, a daily ‘custodial care’ of $150/day will apply.
Can I plan a farewell ceremony or memorial after a direct cremation?
Yes, direct cremation allows families and friends total flexibility to plan a memorial service. The normal timing constraints of a traditional funeral do not apply because the body is not present. You can hold the memorial ceremony whenever is most convenient. Some options include: scattering ceremony on land or at sea, private event at a local restaurant, gathering at home, etc.
Some families elect to have a memorial service at a funeral home. Should this be the case please contact New Leaf, and we will be happy to arrange a service through one of our partner funeral homes.
Is the memorial service included?
No, New Leaf handles the cremation allowing you to plan your own memorial service. If you would like to have a memorial service at one of our partner funeral homes we will be happy to arrange.
Why do you use a third party crematory?
New York State Law prohibits a crematory from being owned or operated by a funeral home- they must be separate entities. The funeral home handles the arrangements, transportation, and registers the death, then delivers the paperwork and decedent to the crematory for cremation. We have strong, long standing relationships with all of the crematories in the New York area. The specific crematory we use will be noted on our paperwork
How are the ashes delivered?
Your loved one’s ashes can be picked up from our location, shipped through USPS Priority Mail, or hand-delivered by one of our representatives. They come in a rigid plastic container unless an urn is purchased through our website.
Why do cremation costs vary between providers?
Cremation companies may either sell their services á la carte or as a package. Be careful as you compare advertised prices. Often, the ad will only state the price that the funeral home charges for their services. The total cost can grow significantly once the crematory fee and mandatory state requirements are added.
New Leaf offers a complete cremation package at one affordable price.
How can you offer such affordable prices?
Traditional funeral homes serve their local communities, so their customer base is limited. Our online model allows us to broaden our service area to serve more families. Additionally, we do not have the same overhead as a traditional funeral home, so we are able to pass that savings along to our customers.
Does low cost mean low quality?
When it comes to a traditional funeral, yes, you get what you pay for- nicer facilities, nicer livery vehicles, etc.
Direct Cremations are a bit different however.
You should research the cremation company’s experience and customer reviews. You can get a sense of whether or not the funeral home is reliable if they have transparent prices. Also, be sure to ask if all transportation is handled by licensed funeral directors, as required by law. You want to make sure you’re loved one is in capable hands.
At New Leaf, we pride ourselves on quality customer service. We believe that a person’s financial standing should not preclude them from a dignified end, and that every life should be celebrated. We treat our clients like family, just as we have for over 100 years at our partner funeral homes.
What areas do you serve?
We provide cremation services in Nassau County, Suffolk County, Queens, Brooklyn, the Bronx, and New York City.
Why choose New Leaf Cremation?
Efficient. Arrangements can be made online or over the phone granting families much more time to plan the memorial as opposed to a traditional service with the body present, which must be planned immediately.
Affordable. Cremation is far more affordable than a traditional burial. Many items which inflate the cost of burial are not needed (embalming, the use of funeral facilities for visitation, caskets, etc.)
Experienced. Our affiliate funeral homes have been in business for over 100 years and our directors are some of the best in the industry. We are here for you every step of the way.
Flexible. Cremation allows each person to express his/her individuality by choosing various memorial options. Unlike a traditional visitation with the body present, which must be scheduled immediately, cremation allows the memorial to be postponed to a more convenient time.
Gentler On Our Environment. There are no chemicals used for embalming; nor the need for perpetual maintenance of the grounds at the cemetery.
Who has the right to make cremation/funeral decisions?
If the deceased designated someone to make choices regarding their disposition, that preference must be honored.
This designation may have been made in a Last Will and Testament, a Living Will, or another notarized or otherwise legal document, such as:Authorization for Final Disposition
- Disposition Authorization Affidavit
- Appointment of Agent to Control Disposition of Remains
If the deceased has not designated someone to make decisions regarding their final disposition the responsibility lies with the next of kin.
In order to qualify as next of kin, a person must be over 18-years-old. The relationships listed below usually apply to biological, adoptive, half-, and step-relations equally.
- Spouse/domestic partner
- Authorized guardian
- Nieces and nephews
- Grand-nieces and grand-nephews
- Aunts and uncles
- First cousins
- Great-grandchildren of Grandparents
- Second cousins
- Fiduciary (a legally appointed trustee)
How many copies of the death certificate do you need?
Establishments that will most likely require to keep a certified copy of a death certificate for their records:
-Life and health insurance companies
-Stock certificates, bonds, treasury bills, certificates of deposit and money market accounts
-401ks, retirement plans, IRAs and pensions
-Out of state bank accounts
-Rental storage companies
-Transfer of human remains (also the scattering of ashes in some states)
-Title transfer of ownership of real estate and all motor vehicles
-Burial and Funeral insurance
-Federal and state tax returns
Some accounts, like social security, credit cards (via fax or scan), cell phone providers, DMV and some bank accounts will not require an actual certified copy on hand. Bring them the certified copy, and a photocopy they make themselves will suffice.