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Cemetery Reaches $35 Million Settlement Over Discarded Human Remains

– February 28, 2014

A cemetery in Mission Hills, California, has reached a $35 million settlement after damage to burial vaults caused cemetery employees to discard human remains.

Under the terms of the settlement, Eden Memorial Park cemetery will pay $35 million to families whose loved ones are interred there and to anyone who purchased an unused burial plot.

According to court documents, employees of the cemetery allegedly admitted to frequently breaking caskets and other burial containers in existing graves in order to fit in as many graves as possible.

Although cemetery groundskeepers admitted to the practice in a 2007 memo, Service Corporation International, the company that owns the cemetery, has denied any wrongdoing.

The settlement will also require Eden Memorial to use metal rods to ensure burial containers won’t be broken in the future and to notify families if any damage to a burial vault is ever discovered.

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