In short, no. However, read on. Under 225 ILCS 41 Sec. 1-10 embalming is defined as “the means of processing and sanitizing a deceased in order to reduce the presence of microorganisms, to retard decomposition, and render for safe handling while retaining the naturalness and restored physical appearance for funeral viewing purposes.” Embalming may be required if the deceased has died from certain types of contagion, where remains are transported via common carrier, or transportation to states that specifically require it under similar circumstances, and when exercising due diligence because of family member contact. A funeral home may require it if there is protracted viewing or formal visitation, but a funeral director may not require it or refuse family members to ability to see the deceased based solely upon their election not to embalm. It‘s often best to defer to the discretion of the funeral professional, however, bear in mind, where not wanted or needed, you should not have to pay for it.

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