Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 54.1. Professions and Occupations
Chapter 28. Funeral Services

Article 2. Licensure of Funeral Establishments.

§ 54.1-2810. Licensure of funeral establishments.

No person shall conduct, maintain, manage or operate a funeral establishment unless a license for each such establishment has been issued by the Board. No license to operate a funeral establishment shall be issued by the Board unless each such funeral establishment has in charge, full time, a person licensed for the practice of funeral service or a licensed funeral director. Applications for funeral establishment licenses shall be made on forms furnished by the Board and filed by the owner or the registered agent of the corporation with the Board.

Each funeral establishment license shall expire annually at a time prescribed by Board regulation. A license may be renewed within 30 days of its expiration. Upon expiration of the license, the Board shall notify each licensee of the provisions of this section. Renewal of a license after the expiration of the 30-day period shall be in the discretion of the Board.

Violations of any provisions of this chapter or any Board regulations by any person, or an officer, agent or employee with the knowledge or consent of any person operating a funeral establishment shall be considered sufficient cause for suspension or revocation of the funeral establishment license.

An operator of a funeral establishment shall not allow any person licensed for the practice of funeral service to operate out of his funeral establishment unless the licensee is the operator or an employee of the operator of a licensed funeral establishment.

If the manager of the funeral service establishment is unable, for any reason, to exercise adequate supervision, direction, management, and control of the funeral establishment, the owner shall designate any funeral service licensee to serve as a temporary manager and notify the Board in writing within 14 days. If such inability of the manager exceeds 90 days or is expected to exceed 90 days, a new manager shall be designated and registered with the Board. At the conclusion of the 90-day period for designation of a new manager, a funeral service establishment which has failed to designate a new manager shall not operate as a funeral service establishment.

When licensing funeral establishments, the Board may grant a hardship waiver from the requirement for a full-time manager licensed for the practice of funeral service or licensed as a funeral director, allowing the operation of two funeral establishments having in charge one full-time person licensed for the practice of funeral service or one licensed funeral director who divides his time between the two funeral establishments. Prior to granting a hardship waiver, the Board shall find that (i) the two establishments have been in operation for at least three years; (ii) the combined average number of funeral calls at the two establishments, as submitted in monthly reports to the Division of Vital Records and Health Statistics of the Virginia Department of Health, over the previous three years is no more than 135 per year; and (iii) the distance between the two establishments is 50 miles or less.

Prior to granting a renewal of a license granted under a hardship waiver, the Board shall determine whether the requirements for license renewal under such waiver continue to exist.

Code 1950, §§ 54-260.39, 54-260.40; 1956, c. 220; 1972, c. 797, § 54-260.73; 1974, 164; 1978, c. 849; 1988, c. 765; 1996, c. 757; 2000, c. 773; 2013, c. 108; 2019, c. 66.

§ 54.1-2811. Facility requirements.

A funeral service establishment shall contain a preparation room equipped with a tile, cement or other waterproof floor, proper drainage and ventilation, the necessary instruments and supplies for the preparation and embalming of dead human bodies for burial, transportation or other disposition, and separate restroom facilities.

A funeral service establishment having more than one location at which it performs funeral services shall not be required to maintain more than one preparation room.

The Board may adopt regulations and classifications to prescribe proper drainage and ventilation and necessary instruments and supplies in preparation rooms and separate restroom facilities.

Code 1950, §§ 54-260.39, 54-260.40; 1956, c. 220; 1972, c. 797, § 54-260.73; 1974, 164; 1978, c. 849; 1988, c. 765.

§ 54.1-2811.1. Handling and storage of human remains.

A. Upon taking custody of a dead human body, a funeral service establishment shall maintain such body in a manner that provides complete coverage of the body and that is resistant to leakage or spillage, except during embalming or preparation of an unembalmed body for final disposition; restoration and dressing of a body in preparation for final disposition; and viewing during any visitation and funeral service.

B. If a dead human body is to be stored for more than 48 hours prior to disposition, a funeral services establishment having custody of such body shall ensure that the dead human body is maintained in refrigeration at no more than approximately 40 degrees Fahrenheit or embalmed. A dead human body shall be maintained in refrigeration and shall not be embalmed in the absence of express permission by a next of kin of the deceased or a court order.

C. If a dead human body is to be stored for more than 10 days prior to disposition at a location other than a funeral service establishment, the funeral service establishment shall disclose to the contract buyer the location where the body is to be stored and the method of storage.

D. Funeral services establishments, crematories, or transportation services shall not transport animal remains together with dead human bodies. Further, animal remains shall not be refrigerated in a unit where dead human bodies are being stored.

2010, c. 823.

§ 54.1-2812. Itemized statement and general price list of funeral expenses to be furnished.

Every person licensed pursuant to the provisions of this chapter shall furnish a written general price list and a written itemized statement of charges in connection with the care and disposition of the body of a deceased person.

Individuals inquiring in person about funeral arrangements or the prices of funeral goods shall be given the general price list. Upon beginning discussion of funeral arrangements or the selection of any funeral goods or services, the general price list must be offered by the funeral licensee.

The itemized statement shall include, but not be limited to, the following charges: casket, other funeral merchandise, vault or other burial receptacle, facilities used, transportation costs, embalming, preparation of the body, other professional services used and disclosure statements required by the Federal Trade Commission, which shall be set forth in a clear and conspicuous manner.

Further, there shall be included a statement of all anticipated cash advances and expenditures requested by the person contracting for the funeral arrangements and such other items as required by regulation of the Board of Funeral Directors and Embalmers. The statement shall be furnished to the person contracting for funeral arrangements at the time such arrangements are made if the person is present and, if not present, no later than the time of the final disposition of the body.

The general price list and itemized statement of funeral expenses shall comply with forms prescribed by regulation of the Board. All regulations promulgated herewith shall promote the purposes of this section.

1979, c. 8, § 54-260.71:1; 1986, c. 42; 1988, c. 765.