Administrative Code

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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 18. Professional And Occupational Licensing
Agency 65. Board of Funeral Directors And Embalmers
Chapter 20. Regulations Governing the Practice of Funeral Services

18VAC65-20-500. Disciplinary action.

In accordance with the provisions of § 54.1-2806 of the Code of Virginia, the following practices are considered unprofessional conduct and may subject the licensee to disciplinary action by the board:

1. Breach of confidence. The unnecessary or unwarranted disclosure of confidences by the funeral licensee.

2. Unfair competition.

a. Interference by a funeral service licensee, funeral director, or registered surface transportation and removal service when another has been called to take charge of a dead human body and the caller or agent of the caller has the legal right to the body's disposition.

b. Consent by a funeral service licensee or funeral director to take charge of a body unless authorized by the person or his agent having the legal right to disposition.

3. False advertising.

a. No licensee or registrant shall make, publish, disseminate, circulate, or place before the public, or cause directly or indirectly to be made, an advertisement of any sort regarding services or anything so offered to the public that contains any promise, assertion, representation, or statement of fact which is untrue, deceptive, or misleading.

b. The following practices, both written and verbal, shall constitute false, deceptive, or misleading advertisement within the meaning of subdivision 4 of § 54.1-2806 of the Code of Virginia:

(1) Advertising containing inaccurate statements; and

(2) Advertisement that gives a false impression as to ability, care, and cost of conducting a funeral, or that creates an impression of things not likely to be true.

c. The following practices are among those that shall constitute an untrue, deceptive, and misleading representation or statement of fact:

(1) Representing that funeral goods or services will delay the natural decomposition of human remains for a long term or indefinite time; and

(2) Representing that funeral goods have protective features or will protect the body from gravesite substances over or beyond that offered by the written warranty of the manufacturer.

4. Inappropriate handling and storage of dead human bodies, consistent with § 54.1-2811.1 of the Code of Virginia and regulations of the board. Transportation and removal vehicles shall be of such nature as to eliminate exposure of the deceased to the public during transportation. During the transporting of a human body, consideration shall be taken to avoid unnecessary delays or stops during travel.

5. Failure to furnish price information disclosing the cost to the purchaser for each of the specific funeral goods and funeral services used in connection with the disposition of deceased human bodies.

6. Conducting the practice of funeral services, funeral directing, or embalming in such a manner as to constitute a danger to the health, safety, and well-being of the staff or the public.

7. Inability to practice with skill or safety because of physical, mental, or emotional illness, or substance abuse.

8. Failure to register as a supervisor for an intern or failure to provide reports to the board as required by the Code of Virginia and 18VAC65-40-320.

9. Failure to comply with applicable federal and state laws and regulations, including requirements for continuing education.

10. Inappropriate sexual contact between a supervisor and a funeral service intern if the sexual contact is a result of the exploitation of trust, knowledge, or influence derived from the professional relationship or if the contact has had or is likely to have an adverse effect on the practice of funeral services or on intern training.

11. Conducting activities or performing services that are outside the scope of a licensee's practice or for which the licensee is not trained and individually competent.

Statutory Authority

§ 54.1-2400 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR320-01-2 § 10.1, eff. October 24, 1990; amended, Virginia Register Volume 8, Issue 25, eff. October 7, 1992; Volume 11, Issue 14, eff. May 3, 1995; Volume 15, Issue 7, eff. January 20, 1999; Volume 19, Issue 19, eff. July 2, 2003; Volume 22, Issue 21, eff. July 26, 2006; Volume 24, Issue 24, eff. September 3, 2008; Volume 26, Issue 26, eff. September 29, 2010; Volume 39, Issue 6, eff. December 7, 2022.

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