October, November, & December, 2020

Q4 eNewsletter 


         President's Note 

     We hope you and yours are safe, healthy and well as we continue to navigate the new normal and challenges of the pandemic.
     Through all of this, funeral directors and cemeterians have continuously shown why they are some of the most incredible and inspiring members in our communities.
     They are indeed the “final responders” that are there to guide families through one of the worst days of their lives, in a year when so many have been forced to face that day sooner than they expected.
     At FSI, our team is dedicated to how we can support our clients, the “final responders,” as they help families navigate a difficult and challenging time. Whether it’s through managing contracts digitally, keeping sensitive data safe online or just being on the other end of the phone when you have a recordkeeping or regulatory question, our focus has been and will remain on how we can continue to empower you.
     We hope this issue of our e-newsletter is helpful and that the resources, tools or news included help you better operate your firm and serve your families. As always, we are just one email or phone call away if you have any needs, comments or questions.
     We look forward to speaking with you soon and hope all of you have a productive end of the year and Happy Holidays.



Bill Williams
President and CEO, Funeral Services, Inc.
FSI Partners with Argent Trust to Launch 
Washington Professional Deathcare Trusts

     FSI is excited to announced we have joined forces with Argent Trust Company to form the Washington Professional Deathcare Trusts, which is open to funeral homes or cemeteries of any size in the state of Washington. These trusts provide a more efficient, cost-effective and modern solution to your preneed or perpetual care program.
     The Washington Professional Deathcare Trusts allow funeral directors and cemeterians to:

  • Experience a more comprehensive and diversified investment strategy, similar to what large organizations enjoy
  • Utilize digital tools that enable you to manage, sign and sell preneed contracts virtually
  • Ensure that regulatory trust compliance audits go smoothly
  • Engage with a team that has more than 60 years of combined experience in the deathcare industry
     If you or a peer is based in Washington, learn more at www.argentfinancial.com/washington-professional-deathcare-trusts/.  We are ready to help!
FSI to Speak at the Funeral Service
Business Plan Conference

     Don’t miss the presentation by Bill Williams and Wendy Russell Wiener at Kates-Boylston’s Funeral Service Business Plan Conference in December. Bill and Wendy will offer up an in-depth discussion on the due diligence necessary to complete a successful transaction for buyers or sellers of deathcare firms. The conference is being held in Nashville, Tennessee, on Dec. 3-4 at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel.
 Read more about Bill and Wendy’s presentation here: 

Regulatory Update.

     As FSI continues to ensure its clients remain in compliance with all deathcare laws and regulations, we also want to educate you on changes or little-known details within the industry that impact your business. 

     Our general counsel and dear friends at WRW Legal share insights in each of our quarterly e-newsletters.

Password Security for Funeral Homes and Cemeteries

      Passwords of less than 10 characters that use only numbers can be guessed instantly, while passwords of 14 characters that include numbers, uppercase letters and lowercase letters will take 2,000 years to hack. Learn how you can update and improve your passwords to protect the information from your firm and families.


Read More

How Much Do You Know About FSI?

     Each quarterly e-newsletter, we share a service or resource FSI provides to help ensure our clients and the industry understand the value we can deliver to them.

     Did You Know that FSI can organize your deathcare trust account and contracts online, making them accessible 24/7? PRISM – FSI’s robust, secure, online platform – gives you total control of your trust and sales programs. With just a few clicks and in one easy-to-manage location, your firm will have complete access to programs details, including:

  • Market value of an entire trust account
  • Images of any preneed contract
  • Status of every preneed contract, down to the line item
  • Statistics and analysis of your program
  • Multiple reports in various formats
  • Trust transaction history
  • Contracts or payments in error
  • Summary of upcoming events, such as regulatory reporting deadlines

Learn more about our PRISM solution on our website or by calling us any time:

FSI in the News

     Over the last quarter, FSI and fellow colleagues have been sought out to provide thought leadership on a variety of topics in several industry publications. Here’s a quick look at some of the most recent stories featuring FSI.

How Do Unclaimed Property Laws Impact the Deathcare Profession?

     Unclaimed property laws across the county allow individuals and businesses to take ownership of funds that were unintentionally abandoned or not acknowledged. When applied to deathcare, issues related to money owed to a firm do arise. Wendy Russell Wiener and Bill Williams discuss unclaimed property laws and a solution in the latest issue of ICCFA Magazine. Read more here.
Data Security for Funeral Homes and Cemeteries during COVID-19

     More families than ever before are being served digitally by funeral directors and cemeterians because of the coronavirus pandemic, which means the data being shared may be at risk. In a recent issue of Kates-Boylston’s Funeral Service Insider newsletter, Bill Williams provides six tips on how your company can protect confidential data from cyber criminals. Learn more here.

Employee Spotlight:
     FSI is made up of a dedicated team of experienced professionals who work each day to provide you with excellent service. Each individual brings an important skillset that assists us in powering your trust. To help you get to know the FSI team better, we shine a spotlight on one employee each quarter.


Tristan Ferrara, 
Software Developer 

     Tristan Ferrara is the newest software developer to join FSI’s talented IT team. In this position, Tristan is responsible for processing and ensuring the integrity of client data, creating applications that make processes easier and more efficient, and making sure FSI’s website is up to date in terms of information and accessibility.

     In addition to being passionate about software development, Tristan’s favorite aspect of his job is the people he interacts with every day at FSI.
     “The thing I enjoy is the people. I wanted to work at FSI because the environment at the office is very welcoming and professional.”
     Tristan looks forward to improving FSI’s digital solutions and “for the opportunity to impact people’s lives in a positive way, which is a value I hold very highly.”

     Tristan graduated from Florida State University in 2020 with a bachelor’s degree in computer science. Outside of work, Tristan enjoys theatre and has been singing, acting and dancing for 14 years.


     Learn more about Tristan on his LinkedIn profile here: https://www.linkedin.com/in/tristan-ferrara/.

Important FSI Dates to Remember:
November 11, 2020 
Veteran’s Day
FSI offices will be closed in observance of Veteran’s Day.
November 26-27, 2020
FSI offices will be closed in observance of Thanksgiving.

December 3 - 4, 2020  
Kates-Boylston Funeral Service Business Plan Conference
 Nashville, TN
December 24 - 25, 2020 
Christmas Eve and Christmas Day

 FSI offices will be closed in observance of Christmas.
January 1, 2021 
New Year’s Day
FSI offices will be closed in observance of New Year’s Day.
Copyright © *|2017|*|Funeral Services, Inc.|*| All rights reserved.
Our mailing address is:

Funeral Services, Inc.
Post Office Box 13407
Tallahassee, FL  32317
(800) 749-1340

You can unsubscribe from this list