Cemetery Ownership Transfer

Hi Stephanie-My parents passed away several years ago. I've been trying to sell my parents' cemetery plots for a couple of years. Now, I have finally found a buyer interested in the cemetery property. To my surprise, the cemetery tells me that since I don't have a probate, all my siblings have to sign the paperwork for me to sell the plots. I don't talk to one of my brothers and I don't even know where he lives. Is the cemetery claim true? Please let me know as soon as possible. Thank you, Gina from Humble, TX.

Hello Gina,

Unfortunately, this is a constant problem for families. If you purchase burial plots, mausoleums, lawn crypts, and/or cemetery niches within the state of Texas, you only own the burial rights to the property, not the property itself; in other words, only the internal part in which the remains are buried or buried is at your discretion. The only way to claim burial rights after the original owner has passed away is to have a probate with a probate letter stating that you are effectively the executor or executor of the will.

Alternatively, ownership of the cemetery can be claimed through a combination of a will and signed documentation known as an Affidavit of Heirs. The affidavit of heirship is delivered to the cemetery where the property was purchased, listing the decedent's surviving relatives along with a claim of relinquishment. The Quit Statement is a legal document that gives the owner or heir permission to transfer the owner's rights to the new buyer. Both documents must be notarized.

Hope this is helpful, Stephanie Salcedo

If you or someone you know is interested in finding out how to purchase a funeral or cemetery plot at a reduced price, please call Secure Your Legacy at (325) 244-7972.

If you or someone you know would like to learn more about cemetery transfers and/or prepaid funeral policies, please contact the Texas Department of Banking.