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What Are the Regulations for Scattering Ashes?


Can you tell me what rules/regulations surround the scattering of ashes? I wish to scatter my mother's ashes, but not at sea. Are there parks or places you can go?

Most laws surrounding funeral service are based on public health. Once a body has been cremated, there are no public health concerns. Therefore, there are no requirements (or laws) with regards to handling cremated remains. A cemetery may have rules about burying ashes, but these are not state laws. There is no law regarding the handling of ashes. Having said that, if you wanted to apply to a state legislature for a permit to scatter ashes on park grounds or a public reserve, I seriously doubt you would get one.

On a personal note, if you scatter ashes you might want to think awhile about where. From a future memorialization standpoint, it could be very disturbing if the area you pick gets converted into a shopping mall or parking lot. From past experience, I might recommend a special flower garden—someplace you expect to stay the same for some time and you can find later if you choose to return to that spot.

Hope this helps. --Jon Roeder

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