Hearse useage

Rick Franklin

PCS Member
To all the funeral directors here, I would like your thoughts. Recently, a friend of mines father passed away. He was a Ford-Lincoln salesman for over 50 years. The family owned funeral home in the town where he lived only has a Cadillac hearse. The son of the deceased told the Funeral director that NO WAY NO HOW was his dad taking his final ride in a Cadillac. The funeral director claims that they were unable to locate in the Seattle-Western Washington area a Lincoln hearse. So my friend says, I have a friend who has one and we can borrow it (meaning MY hearse). The Funeral Direector flat out refused to allow it and the ended up carrying the deceased in an Econoline cargo van. your thoughts , please!
 
To all the funeral directors here, I would like your thoughts. Recently, a friend of mines father passed away. He was a Ford-Lincoln salesman for over 50 years. The family owned funeral home in the town where he lived only has a Cadillac hearse. The son of the deceased told the Funeral director that NO WAY NO HOW was his dad taking his final ride in a Cadillac. The funeral director claims that they were unable to locate in the Seattle-Western Washington area a Lincoln hearse. So my friend says, I have a friend who has one and we can borrow it (meaning MY hearse). The Funeral Direector flat out refused to allow it and the ended up carrying the deceased in an Econoline cargo van. your thoughts , please!

It's all about Liability if something went wrong. The FH didn't want to be sued. If you were given $'s for it's use, your insurance would not cover! Just the way the world is anymore!
 

Kurt Arends

PCS Elected Director 2021-2024
Super Site Supporter
I would bet the FD would have changed his mind had they told him they were going to take the decedant elsewhere! Your coach is fully insured, I am sure, and would have been covered as long as you were not taking any money for your services.
 

NJ Dorsey

Registered User
I'm sure it varies from state to state, but what type of insurance is required by the vehicle owner to "rent" the hearse?
 

Kent Dorsey

PCS Member / Funeral Director
Rick, my knee jerk reaction is that a funeral director truly trying to assist the family, would make a call to their dealer to ask about access to one, or ask if they know of another fd who had one. I had the same situation about 3 years ago, a funeral home 100 miles away knew I had a Lincoln, a gentleman made a preneed and told the fd he would go the grave in a Lincoln or they could carry him away in a van. The fd called me and I loaned them the Lincoln WITH ONE OF OUR DRIVERS, which is what our insurance company is going to want.
I hadn't thought about the liability situation immediately like it has been mentioned here, however, I think I would do everything I could keep someone from being taken to their grave in a cargo van.
This business is like everything else, varying degrees from firm to firm of wanting to bother with some situations or make an extra effort by staff.
 

John ED Renstrom

PCS Member - Elected Director 2019-2022
Super Site Supporter
when we took Mother to the Grave site we used the 67 crown. the Funeral home lead the possession.I loaded mom in the car and fallowed them. that satisfied there liability. as I had relived them of the remains and I taken possession of them. the 4 of us kids could ride in the combo with her. all my car was one more in the procession. that they lead.
 

Paul Steinberg

Administrator
Staff member
Super Site Supporter
When a friend of mine passed away suddenly, I told the family that I had access to a vintage hearse. They asked the funeral director, and he had no problem with using it for the final ride. I drove the hearse from the funeral home to the cemetery, and followed him in his lead car. No one ever asked about insurance, or even mentioned it. The hearse was insured by the owner (Jim Staruk), and I am also insured for any vehicle that I borrow or rent.
I wonder where the FD got the Ford cargo van. As was said above, I would have gone to another funeral home.
 

Peter Grave

Super Site Supporter
Super Site Supporter
I have never rented any Hearse I have however rented both Police cars and undercover cars to Police Departments. All that was done was they made a call to THEIR insurance company to add our car as a rental and both we and the department involved were covered. I would assume if the FD involved had done the same with his insurance company all would have been OK liability wise. Remember Henry Ford made his last ride in a Packard cause Ford could not find a Lincoln
 
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Rick Franklin

PCS Member
The Econoline van they used was their own van which was purchased from the local Ford Dealer and the salesman was none other than the decendant. In this particular town, your funeral options are the local family owned home, SCI, or several funeral service providers who operate out of a store front office without a brick & mortar Funeral home per se. What gets me is I know of at one Funeral Home in Seattle 17 miles away that has a Lincoln hearse
 

Rick Franklin

PCS Member
It's all about Liability if something went wrong. The FH didn't want to be sued. If you were given $'s for it's use, your insurance would not cover! Just the way the world is anymore!

i understand your point being made. However, I would have gladly provided my coach fre of charge for my friends family
 

Rick Franklin

PCS Member
The Econoline van they used was their own van which was purchased from the local Ford Dealer and the salesman was none other than the decendant. In this particular town, your funeral options are the local family owned home, SCI, or several funeral service providers who operate out of a store front office without a brick & mortar Funeral home per se. What gets me is I know of at one Funeral Home in Seattle 17 miles away that has a Lincoln hearse

I just spoke to a PNW Chapter member who is a local funeral director and he informed me that one of the large Seattle firms that is independently owned has 2 Lincoln coaches so it appears that this Funeral Home didnt try too hard to find a Lincoln.
 
To all the funeral directors here, I would like your thoughts. Recently, a friend of mines father passed away. He was a Ford-Lincoln salesman for over 50 years. The family owned funeral home in the town where he lived only has a Cadillac hearse. The son of the deceased told the Funeral director that NO WAY NO HOW was his dad taking his final ride in a Cadillac. The funeral director claims that they were unable to locate in the Seattle-Western Washington area a Lincoln hearse. So my friend says, I have a friend who has one and we can borrow it (meaning MY hearse). The Funeral Direector flat out refused to allow it and the ended up carrying the deceased in an Econoline cargo van. your thoughts , please!

I would allow just need a waiver release. Not only would I allow it I would encourage it.
 

Jim Staruk

Super Site Supporter
Super Site Supporter
When a friend of mine passed away suddenly, I told the family that I had access to a vintage hearse. They asked the funeral director, and he had no problem with using it for the final ride. I drove the hearse from the funeral home to the cemetery, and followed him in his lead car. No one ever asked about insurance, or even mentioned it. The hearse was insured by the owner (Jim Staruk), and I am also insured for any vehicle that I borrow or rent.
I wonder where the FD got the Ford cargo van. As was said above, I would have gone to another funeral home.

Yes, my hearse was fully insured for all passengers. I do not remember any disclaimer stating that all passengers must be alive .....
 
Mutual Aid

In all my 50+ years of funeral service I have borrowed vehicles and loaned vehicles to other funeral homes in our area.
The same thing municipalities have mutual aid agreements for the benefit of their communities.
 

Erin Phelps

PCS Member
The funeral director was doing a disservice to the family, getting a Lincoln hearse from another FH or letting you drive the deceased would have been a great memory for the family. Sometimes you have to forget about liability and do the right thing (There are general release from liability form available that at least get the message out there that the FH can't be held responsible or liable for anything)
 

Chris Bruno

PCS Member
A friend of mine was so nervous to give the eulogy at his grandfather's funeral that he asked me to attend for moral support. It was odd request because he was an accomplished public speaker but I understood his nerves were on edge and agreed to go . . . way out into the sticks. It was a graveside and as we pulled up I said, "Didn't you say that Chet worked at FoMoCo all his life?" "Yes," came the answer. I pointed to the Pontiac hearse and said, "there's you're opening line!" He killed it with the indignity of his last ride being courtesy of GM and did a great job on the eulogy. (I like the line above about a Lincoln or an EconoVan.)
 
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