NPS Scandel and Forever Funeral Homes

A company news release posted in February on said National Prearranged Services served 2,600 funeral homes and paid a total of $300 million in death claims. Donna Garrett, the person appointed to administer the companies after their failure, said Wednesday that she was aware of the FBI investigation but had not seen the letter. She said National Prearranged Services had done business in 43 states and the District of Columbia. National Prearranged Services had 158,153 active preneed funeral contracts valued at nearly $662 million, Garrett said. Two of its largest sales-volume states were Missouri and Texas, which combined accounted for more than 110,000 customer contracts valued around $335 million, officials in the two states said Wednesday. Figures from other states were not immediately available. “There are going to be some funeral homes that are in severe financial difficulty, and we might even have some that go out of business, particularly if they had a large number of NPS claims and if those NPS claims come due in a relatively narrow time frame,” said Don Otto, executive director of the Missouri Funeral Directors Association. St. Louis County funeral home owner Jim Buchholz said an FBI agent interviewed him in June about National Prearranged Services and told him that he was the first Missouri funeral home owner contacted as part of the investigation. “Their big thing was they wanted to find out if we had anything (documented) where it said how much interest we would get if our stuff was rolled over” to National Prearranged Services, said Buchholz, owner of Buchholz Mortuaries.

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