Cremation FAQs

Because comfort is a priority at Generations funeral home in Houston, we encourage our families to ask questions in order to gain reassurance and confidence during what may be, for many, a difficult and often confusing time.

If Cremation has been selected, can I still have a funeral?

Yes. Cremation is one of four types of disposition recognized by the State of Texas and only takes place after any other requested service, such as a traditional funeral with the body of the deceased present. Although the practice of cremation is becoming more established, it is not a substitute for those traditional funeral rituals that honor the lives of our deceased loved ones.

Can embalming be performed prior to cremation?

Yes. An embalming is only performed at a family’s request, usually in conjunction with a public viewing or open casket service.* There is no legal requirement regarding embalming in the State of Texas. Embalming is only required by Generations when certain services are selected such as a public viewing or other open-casket service.

*If for any reason embalming is required, then you will be notified in writing and given alternative options if preferred.

How long does cremation take?

The cremation process, from the time of initial phone contact with Generations until the cremated remains are in the custody of the family, usually takes several days. In Harris County, a 48-hour waiting period must be observed from the time of death until a cremation may commence. A cremation permit must be issued and a physicians’ signed statement of cause of death must be filed, both of which we will do for you. A signed authorization to cremate must be provided by the next-of-kin, family member or other representative. Please consult your funeral director prior to scheduling any public services when cremated remains are to be present.

How is the identification process maintained throughout the cremation process?

The identification process at Generations begins even before your loved one is transferred to the funeral home. An identification band is affixed while our representative is at the hospital, hospice or private residence. The identification band will stay with the deceased through the entire cremation process. Because cremation completely reduces all recognizable features, an additional non-combustible metallic badge with a stamped number specific to the deceased is placed in the cremation chamber. This number is recorded with the name of the deceased and retained at Joseph J. Earthman Generations. Once the cremation is complete, the cremated remains are transferred to an urn or other selected container. An identification label containing the name of the deceased, date of cremation, funeral home information and badge number is affixed to the container. The metal badge, while affected by the cremation process, remains legible and is placed in the urn.

Please contact our offices for further information at 713-802-0000 or online at