NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – An investigation by New York City’s Department of Consumer Affairs has found one in three funeral homes is in violation of basic customer protections, the DCA announced Tuesday.
The DCA has issued more than 325 violations against funeral homes in connection with its investigation, which consisted of hundreds of in-person and telephone inspections over a two-month period.
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DCA Commissioner Jonathan Mintz accused the funeral homes of violating consumers’ right to privately review pricing information without high-pressure sales tactics.
“If you’ve just lost a loved one, the last thing you need is a funeral parlor trying to sell you their most expensive casket,” he said.
He said funeral homes are legally required to allow costumers to see a full list of funeral prices and services in a take-away price sheet at the door or over the phone.
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“It is deceptive to not have a price on a casket. It’s deceptive to not have a price on any item that you’re offering,” Mintz said. “The reason is because it means that they can charge you different prices. It means they can charge you different prices based upon what you look like, what the color of your skin is.”
Mintz said those funeral homes that were found to be in violation could face close to $400,000 in fines from the city.
If planning a funeral, the DCA recommends you get a price a list of all products and services offered and itemized receipts once purchases are made.
For more information about the DCA’s investigation, click here.
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