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I am the Executor of the will. My mother has stated in her will that her remaining money would go towards having a cremation. I am keen to take my brother to court because I want to honor my mother's wishes. My second plan is to have a burial service and sue my brother for the additional costs. I'm in a dilemma. If anyone has dealt with something similar or could give some advice that would be greatly appreciated!

If one family member objects to cremation and there are no funds set aside for 'traditional' burying, who pays for that?

Betcha if brother had to cough up the $10K to deal with an open grave burial, he'd change his tune.

People opt for cremation for many reasons and it's YOUR job as executor to make those things happen. This is the exact reason our SON is not our executor and our DAUGHTER is. She will do everything just the way we want. Son would drive his sisters crazy.
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lexicoleman Mar 20, 2021
Oh, for sure! My brother wouldn't have even paid for the traditional burial. But, I finally got a court order in my favor and I'm carrying out her wishes.
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Take the will to the crematorium and show it to them? Then inform them that you are keen on legally carrying out her legally documented last wishes.
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lexicoleman Mar 20, 2021
Unfortunately, the crematorium needed a court order. So, we had a petition for determination of authority and the judge ruled in our favor.
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Update: I finally got to honor my mother's wishes and have her cremated. It's a happy sad feeling. In regards to the court situation, my brother was served with summons. I worked with a trust and estate lawyer and they filed a petition for determination of authority. In the end, the judge ruled in our favor. I was able to show the crematorium the court order and have my mother cremated. I'm glad this situation is over. Thank you all for your replies.
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Why in the world would your brother object to your mom’s last wishes?

I agree with Geaton. Take the will to the crematorium and show them.

Or can you have an attorney write a letter to them with a copy of the will?

So sorry that you are in this predicament.

Best wishes to you.
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lexicoleman Mar 20, 2021
Thanks! We had a petition for determination of authority and the judge ruled in our favor.
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No offense, but you'd never win a lawsuit like that.

Take the will and your ID to the mortuary and tell them you are the authorized party to make decisions in this matter and to do it. If they continue to balk, transfer your mother's remains to another mortuary, then sue the first place for the additional expense incurred. That's a lawsuit you could win.
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lexicoleman Mar 20, 2021
We did win :)
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I have read that this is common. If one family member objects they will not cremate. Try a different crematorium first?
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lexicoleman Mar 20, 2021
I didn't want to move my mother from crematorium to crematorium. It's Virginia law that they need permission from the family members so, we would just get the same answer from other crematoriums.
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The first time I read this I thought "who cares what state you are ceremated in. Ashes can be sent anywhere." Then I realize brother doesn't want Mom cremated. Well, that is not his decision. As said, I would tell him that Mom set aside this amount for her cremation. If he wants a traditional burial, then he can pay the difference. If not willing to do that, then u go with the cremation.

I also liked that you need to show Moms will to the Crematorium director to show that you r caring out Moms wishes.
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lexicoleman Mar 20, 2021
Unfortunately, they didn't want to pay for a traditional burial either. The crematorium required a court order not the will. I had a petition for determination of authority and the judge ruled in my favor.
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Why not ASK your brother first if he is willing to pay the difference in what mom stipulated money for (cremation) and what he wants.

If there is enough money for burial, why not avoid the lawsuit against brother (who may or may not have any money to pay you anyway) and just do a simple burial. It avoids the hard feelings that will last for many, many years and, more important, the legal expense for a suit. You'd probably end up spending the same amount anyway AND the irreparable damage done within the family. Consider that some people just can't deal with having a loved one 'burned' up.
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lexicoleman Mar 20, 2021
Because I know my brother wasn't going to pay for anything (burial or cremation). Initially, when I wrote my OP, I wasn't sure what legal action to take hence why I first said 'sue.' My brother has the money he just didn't want to pay. My mother means more to mean than my brother so I don't care about hurting his feelings. I had a petition for determination of authority and the judge ruled in my favor. She's 'burnt' up now and that's what she would've wanted.
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In Texas, it is the law that the spouse must agree to the cremation, unless there is a written directive from the deceased stating their wishes. If there is no spouse, then all children must give permission. When my stepmother died, I had to find a second cousin in Australia to give permission for the cremation, because my sisters and I were not blood relatives. Google your state's regulations on cremation. If the instructions in the will are sufficient, your brother can go pound sand. You can have your sweet mother cremated.
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lexicoleman Mar 20, 2021
For Virginia law, I had to get a petition for determination of authority (the judge ruled in my favor). Then, I showed the crematorium the court order and they finally began the cremation process. My brother is probably pounding sand now.
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lexicoleman, had your Mother already passed, if so my hearthfelt sympathy. As we all know, time is of the essence here. The funeral home can hold your Mom but there is a daily cost for holding. Going to Court could take weeks if not longer, especially with the covid, court time is limited.

If your Mom is still alive, could she tell her son her wishes, or is that something she can no longer do?

You need to hold by your Mom's wishes.
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lexicoleman Mar 20, 2021
Oh, I went to court. I had no problem with time. I viewed different funeral homes in the area as a plan b if the judge didn't rule in my favor but, the judge did rule in my favor. My mom passed in late January and was stored in the crematorium until this past week.

I'm glad I got to honor my mother's wishes.
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