Orlando Cremation: Common Questions Answered

Daniela Fortino
Daniela Fortino
March 25th 2024 - 12 minute read
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Families planning a cremation in Orlando, Florida often have questions. This guide explains the process, cremation cost and more.

Cremation is a popular choice for funeral arrangements. Florida has  one of the highest cremation rates in the U.S. making up 67.8 percent of arrangements (2020 stats).

Still, many people have questions about the process and what it entails for them or their loved ones. This article by the team at Eirene Cremations answers some of the most common questions about cremation in Orlando, Florida.

Note: Need to make cremation arrangements now? Click here

Below we answer the following cremation questions as it relates to the Orlando area:

What is the cremation process in Orlando?

Outlined below are typical steps involved in a cremation funeral in the city and across Florida.

Reporting the death

When a death occurs in Florida, it must be reported to the appropriate authorities. Emergency services (dial 9-1-1) should be contacted first if the death is sudden or unexpected. It is also advised to call 9-1-1 if you are unsure who to contact. A funeral provider may also be able to assist in reporting. If someone dies under supervised care (e.g., nursing home), the staff will report the death.

An expected death typically means a post-death plan in place. These plans are discussed beforehand with a physician, funeral provider, caregiver, etc. As such, they can be contacted directly instead of emergency services unless the death is suspicious.

Cremation documentation in Orlando

Funeral documentation can vary between jurisdictions. However, typical cremation paperwork includes:

  • Death certificate. It must be signed by an attending physician or medical examiner before cremation or burial can occur.
  • Vital Statistics Form. It contains identifying information about the deceased person (e.g., name, date of birth, etc.) necessary to complete other cremation paperwork.
  • Cremation authorization form. This form provides legal consent from the deceased person's family to allow the funeral providers to handle cremation services.
  • Release form. This authorizes the funeral home to transport the deceased person's body to the crematorium.

The documentation is often completed with the help of a licensed funeral home. However, it is legal to conduct funeral services independently. Families can contact local authorities for assistance when doing so.

Body identification

Funeral providers employ identification practices to ensure bodies and ashes are not mixed up. Standard identification methods include:

  • Tags. Tags containing identifying information about the deceased person (e.g., name, date of birth, etc.) are placed on the body (e.g., hung from the toe) and checked continuously throughout the process. It remains on the body and is destroyed during the cremation process.
  • Discs. This is a stainless-steel coin-shaped disc containing identifying information about the deceased person. The disc is not destroyed during the cremation process and is often placed with the cremated remains.

Cremation process

Cremation is when a deceased person's body is reduced to cremated remains or ashes. Florida cremation regulations require a 48-hour waiting period after death before cremation can occur.

Before cremation, the body must be prepared. This includes the removal of personal belongings (e.g., jewelry) and medical implants (e.g., pacemaker) that pose a risk to crematorium staff. Non-hazardous materials, such as metal fillings, remain in the body and are later removed and recycled.

After the body is prepared, it is placed in a cremation container or casket and loaded into the retort (cremation chamber). In the retort, the body is exposed to flames and extreme heat. The high temperatures (1400 to 1800 F /760 to 980 Celsius) reduce combustible material and most organic matter. Left behind are bone fragments that are pulverized to create a coarse, grey or brown powder. These are known as ashes or cremated remains.

How much does cremation cost in Orlando?

Funeral costs in the United States can range anywhere from under $600 to $10,000+. However, a 2021 study by the National Funeral Directors Association put the median cost for a burial with a viewing at about $7,848. By contrast, the median price for a cremation with a viewing was around $6,971 (source).

The cost of cremation varies depending on the services and products selected. Fees typically fall between $600 and $7,000 in the U.S. However, Florida has one of the largest populations in the country and a high cremation rate, so funeral homes in the area offer competitively-priced arrangement packages. On average, cremation without will cost between $1,000 and $3,500+.

Simpler cremation options, like direct cremation, tend to cost under $2,000, but cremations with additional funeral services (e.g., viewings) are more expensive ($3,000+).

Costs vary between cremation and aquamation,  with package pricing for direct aquamation falling between $1,000 and $3,000+ on average, and direct cremation ranging from $600 to over $2,000.

Cremation packages and service vary between funeral homes. However, common cremation fees in include:

  • Documentation ($100 to $300+)
  • Transportation ($100+)
  • Storage (starting around $50 per day)
  • Embalming ($600 to $800+)
  • Body preparation ($100 to $300+)
  • Cremation cost (starting around $300)
  • Professional services and staff fees ($200 to $1,000+)
  • Ceremony/celebrations ($0 to $3,000+)
  • Urn purchase ($10 to $2,000+)
  • Interment in the ground or columbarium ($200 to $3,000+)

See a more detailed article on cremation costs in Orlando: Click here.

Is embalming required in Orlando?

Embalming is the chemical preservation of a body designed to slow down physiological changes after death. This is usually done in preparation for a viewing, visitation, or wake.

Embalming is not mandatory in Florida or any other U.S. state However, legislation may require the procedure for certain circumstances, such as international or state-wide transportation, or if a body is not buried or cremated within a specific period. In Florida, for example, a body must be embalmed or refrigerated within 24 hours after death. Embalming may also be recommended for certain funeral services (e.g., wake). Learn more.

What cremation funeral options are available in Orlando?

Cremation funeral options in Orlando are relatively endless. Many opt for a more traditional funeral (e.g., with a viewing, visitation, repast, etc.) before cremation. By contrast, some people favor simple services, like direct cremation with a small gathering afterward. Some may also want to reduce their ecological footprint with green cremation alternatives like aquamation (discussed below) or use of a green burial urn.

Generally, cremation provides greater flexibility when compared to burials, allowing for easy and often lower cost funeral plans. (Learn more about why people choose cremation here).

Contact Eirene Cremations if you'd like to discuss options and arrangements.

Aquamation is a water-based form of disposition that uses the chemical process of alkaline hydrolysis to reduce remains to ashes. The process is legal and available in the state of Florida. Learn more about the legality of aquamation in different states in this article: Where in the United States is Aquamation Legal or Allowed?

During aquamation, the body is treated with water, alkali (potassium hydroxide), heat, and pressure to produce a reaction that speeds up the body's decomposition. This is the same process that occurs when someone is buried in the ground but at an accelerated rate.

The process leaves behind bone fragments and a sterile liquid. The bone fragments are pulverized to produce ashes and the liquid is disposed of as wastewater.

Unlike flame cremation, aquamation has no direct emissions of harmful greenhouse gasses and does not require the burning of fossil fuels. Body preparation may also differ because medical implants are not destroyed during the process and only need to be removed if legally required. However, clothing must also be removed unless it is protein-based (e.g., wool).

Learn more about aquamation.

What is direct cremation, and is it available in Orlando?

Direct cremation involves cremating a deceased person shortly after death and promptly returning the ashes to their loved ones. This option is often cheaper because it eliminates more expensive services such as visitation, viewing, casket purchase, etc.

Do Orlando residents prefer cremation or burial?

Cremation is a popular choice in the U.S., with national cremation rates rising from 26.19 per cent in 2000 to 57.5 per cent in 2021 (source). The numbers are expected to reach 64.1 per cent by 2025.

Cremation rates in Florida have followed this trend, producing one of the highest growth rates for cremations from 2015 to 2019. State cremation rates are also projected to rise from 67.8 per cent in 2020 to 73.3 per cent in 2025 and 77.2 per cent in 2030 (source).

Where can I buy a cremation urn in Orlando?

Cremation urns can be purchased through retailers or wholesalers, from funeral providers, online, and more. There are minimal to no restrictions on the type of urn that can be used for ashes.

The Eirene Urn Store has a wide selection of urn options to suit different needs and budgets. Shipping is available to the U.S. Check out the urn selection in our store.

Who regulates cremation in Orlando?

Cremation in Orlando, Florida, is regulated by the Division and the Board of the Funeral, Cemetery, and Consumer Services in the Florida Department of Financial Services. The Division and the Board oversee the death care industry in Florida.

The roles of the Division and the Board are described in Chapter 497  of the Florida Statutes. In addition, chapter 69K of the Florida Administrative Code also provides information about the death care industry. (Learn more).

Can I witness a cremation in Orlando?

Witnessing a cremation allows families to view their deceased loved one before cremation and/or watch the beginning of the cremation process. This service is available in many areas, including Orlando, but is up to the discretion of a funeral provider or crematorium.

Is financial assistance available for end-of-life arrangements in Orlando?

Many Orlando residents are eligible for federal and state financial funeral assistance programs. Examples are listed below.

Orlando/Florida assistance programs:

Federal funeral assistance programs:

Need more info?

See our helpful guide on help for low income families with funeral costs in Florida.

What can I do with cremated remains?

Cremated remains are typically kept, buried, scattered, or interred in a columbarium. However, many more creative things can be done with cremated remains to honor a loved one. Examples include:

Programs to help with cremation costs

See our helpful guide on help for low income families with funeral costs in Florida.

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