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A Behind-the-Scenes Look at Jobs in the Funeral Industry

Featured image by Syda Productions

It doesn’t matter who you are, how much money you make, or what you do, you can’t escape death. In fact, since the year 2006, the annual death rate is about 800 out of 100,000 people. And who handles death? The funeral industry.

Have you ever thought about a career in the funeral industry? There are many people who feel a career in the industry is a calling.

What are the jobs in the funeral industry? Keep reading to find out.

Law Firms Specializing in Death

Although not directly in the funeral industry, many types of law firms deal with death. For example, a wrongful death law firm helps families when a third party is liable for the death of their loved one.

Lawyers also handle many details involving the estate of the deceased.

Licensed Funeral Director

The funeral director plans all the details of a funeral. This can include preparing the obituary notice and arranging for clergy and pallbearers.

Did the family of the deceased choose a burial? Then the funeral director coordinates all the details of the cemetery. In the case of cremation, the director coordinates with the crematorium.

Funeral directors need an associate’s degree in mortuary science or funeral service. Many funeral industry employers prefer applicants with a bachelor’s degree.

You’ll also complete a one- to three-year training program under a licensed funeral director.

Additionally, you’ll receive training in embalming procedures as well as restorative techniques. Make sure the program you choose has accreditation. You’ll also need certification and a license.

Depending on where you work as a funeral director, you might not deal with any dead bodies. In fact, some funeral directors spend all their time on administrative details.

Mortician or Embalmer

The traditional role of the mortician was handling the body for funeral preparation. This includes embalming the body. In many funeral homes today, the funeral director is also the mortician.

Morticians and embalmers are synonymous. The mortician also needs certification and a license.

You’ll need a license in Washington DC as well as the state in which you work. The only exception is Colorado because they offer a voluntary program for certification.

Jobs in the Funeral Industry

Licensed funeral director and mortician (embalmer) are the two main career paths in the funeral industry. Lawyers who work with the families of the deceased are another career path related to the industry.

There is also a funeral service worker position. This is an entry-level job in which the worker is an assistant. She helps out in any capacity that doesn’t require certification or licensure.


Is a Job in the Funeral Industry the Right Path for You?

There are several jobs in the funeral industry and one of them might be the right career for you. If you’re compassionate by nature and like helping grieving families, consider a career in the funeral industry.

Funeral directors arrange all aspects of a funeral, whereas morticians primarily work preparing bodies for burial or cremation. Becoming a funeral service worker is a step in the right direction if you’re not quite sure which career is best suited to you.

Have more career or business questions? Find answers on our blog.