Scattering Ashes Issues

Cremation Issues - Scattering of Ashes

One of the most misunderstood issues regarding cremation is the legality and religious questions for scattering ashes. Here are the answers.

New York State Law

Currently, there is no law that prohibits the scattering of cremated remains on land. As long as there is permission from the land owner, scattering is permitted. The NYS Environmental Protection Agency does prohibit the scattering of ashes in fresh water. So, you cannot scatter cremated remains in lakes, streams, or rivers. 

The Roman Catholic Church does not approve of scattering of ashes. It takes the position that the cremated remains must be maintained whole, and buried or entombed on sacred ground, such as a cemetery.

Additional Considerations

Many cemeteries provide alternatives to conventional scattering of remains. Some allow for the burial of the ashes in a biodegradable urn that will dissolve into the ground. Also, some have scatter vaults installed into the ground where you can pour the ashes into a chamber where they co-mingle with other cremated remains.

Many churches and other organizations have planted gardens where families can scatter the cremated remains of your loved one.

Contact us to see what options are available in your area.