Funeral Planning: What To Do If You Don't Have Pallbearers

When a loved one passes away and you choose to have a traditional burial, it's a common practice to have pallbearers carry the casket. However, in some circumstances, you might not have people to select as pallbearers. This may be due to having a small family or not having friends and relatives who are physically able to perform the task. Fortunately, there are several options available to ensure your loved one gets the proper sendoff.

Rely On Funeral Home Staff

Funeral homes typically have contingency plans for situations where there are no pallbearers, and they will sometimes bring in extra employees for the services to serve as pallbearers. This is a great option because they have experience and know how the funeral and graveside services are usually conducted. You will need to arrange for this in advance so the funeral home will have enough staff members on hand to direct traffic during the funeral procession and handle the pallbearer responsibilities.

Work With A Church

If your loved one was an active member of a local church, you may be able to enlist the clergy's help in finding pallbearers. This is particularly true if you will be holding part of the funeral service at the church. In the event that your relative was not a member of a church but did belong to a specific religion, you can also contact the local church, synagogue, or mosque to see if you can hire help for the funeral. In some cases, this can be done in exchange for a donation to the congregation.

Choose Not To Use Pallbearers

Pallbearers aren't always necessary, so if you are having difficulty enlisting help, you may be able to choose a different route entirely. The funeral home can use a wheeled cart to transport the casket from the funeral home to the hearse, as well as from the hearse to the grave site. You'll want to ensure that there are no sets of steps that will be in the path of the funeral procession for this option, Talk to the funeral director about covering the cart with a cloth to create a more elegant look as the casket is moved from one place to another.

Remember that you can always ask extended family members or close friends of yours who might not have known your loved one. While being chosen as a pallbearer is typically an honor bestowed upon close relatives or friends of the deceased, you may find that your friends are more than happy to help you during this difficult time.

Visit a site like as you continue funeral planning so that you consider all services needed.