GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA

SESSION 2013

H                                                                                                                                                   2

HOUSE BILL 811

Committee Substitute Favorable 5/9/13

 

Short Title:        Amend Practice of Funeral Service Laws.

(Public)

Sponsors:

 

Referred to:

 

April 11, 2013

A BILL TO BE ENTITLED

AN ACT amending the laws pertaining to the practice of funeral service.

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

SECTION 1.  G.S. 58-58-97(d) is repealed.

SECTION 2.  G.S. 90-210.23 reads as rewritten:

" 90-210.23.  Powers and duties of the Board.

(a)        The Board is authorized to adopt and promulgate such rules and regulations for transaction of its business and for the carrying out and enforcement of the provisions of this Article as may be necessary and as are consistent with the laws of this State and of the United States.

(b)        The Board shall elect from its members a president, a vice-president and a secretary, no two offices to be held by the same person. The president and vice-president and secretary shall serve for one year and until their successors shall be elected and qualified. The Board shall have authority to engage adequate staff as deemed necessary to perform its duties.

(c)        The members of the Board shall serve without compensation provided that such members shall be reimbursed for their necessary traveling expenses and the necessary expenses incident to their attendance upon the business of the Board, and in addition thereto they shall receive per diem and expense reimbursement as provided in G.S. 93B-5 for every day actually spent by such member upon the business of the Board. All expenses, salaries and per diem provided for in this Article shall be paid from funds received under the provisions of this Article and shall in no manner be an expense to the State.

(d)        Every person licensed by the Board and every resident trainee shall furnish all information required by the Board reasonably relevant to the practice of the profession or business for which the person is a licensee or resident trainee. Every funeral service establishment and its records and every place of business where the practice of funeral service or embalming is carried on and its records shall be subject to inspection by the Board during normal hours of operation and periods shortly before or after normal hours of operation and shall furnish all information required by the Board reasonably relevant to the business therein conducted. Every licensee, resident trainee, embalming facility, and funeral service establishment shall provide the Board with a current post-office address which shall be placed on the appropriate register and all notices required by law or by any rule or regulation of the Board to be mailed to any licensee, resident trainee, embalming facility, or funeral service establishment shall be validly given when mailed to the address so provided.

(d1)      The Board is empowered to hold hearings in accordance with the provisions of this Article and of Chapter 150B to subpoena witnesses and to administer oaths to or receive the affirmation of witnesses before the Board.

In any show cause hearing before the Board held under the authority of Chapter 150B of the General Statutes where the Board imposes discipline against a licensee, the Board may recover the costs, other than attorneys' fees, of holding the hearing against all respondents jointly, not to exceed two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500).

(e)        The Board is empowered to regulate and inspect, according to law, funeral service establishments and embalming facilities, their operation, and the licenses under which they are operated, and to enforce as provided by law the rules, regulations, and requirements of the Division of Health Services and of the city, town, or county in which the funeral service establishment or embalming facility is maintained and operated. Any funeral establishment or embalming facility that, upon inspection, is found not to meet all of the requirements of this Article shall pay a reinspection fee to the Board for each additional inspection that is made to ascertain that the deficiency or other violation has been corrected. The Board is also empowered to enforce compliance with the standards set forth in Funeral Industry Practices, 16 C.F.R. 453 (1984), as amended from time to time.

(e1)      Any funeral establishment or embalming facility that, upon inspection, is found not to meet all of the requirements of this Article shall pay a reinspection fee to the Board for each additional inspection that is made to ascertain that the deficiency or other violation has been corrected. The amount of the reinspection fee shall be based on the actual cost of reinspection, taking into consideration the salary of any employees involved and any expenses incurred during the reinspection, but shall not exceed three hundred dollars ($300.00) per reinspection.

(e2)      If, after any inspection, a funeral establishment is found to have any documents required by Funeral Industry Practices, 16 C.F.R. Part 453 (1984), not to be in compliance, the Board may charge a reinspection fee not to exceed twenty-five dollars ($25.00) per submission to determine whether the documents are in compliance. If a reinspection is conducted under subsection (e1) of this section, the Board shall include the costs of reinspection in the reinspection fee assessed under subsection (e1) of this section.

(f)         The Board may establish, supervise, regulate and control programs for the resident trainee. It may approve schools of mortuary science or funeral service, graduation from which is required by this Article as a qualification for the granting of any license, and may establish essential requirements and standards for such approval of mortuary science or funeral service schools.

(g)        Schools for teaching mortuary science which are approved by the Board shall have extended to them the same privileges as to the use of bodies for dissecting while teaching as those granted in this State to medical colleges, but such bodies shall be obtained through the same agencies which provide bodies for medical colleges.

(h)        The Board shall adopt a common seal.

(h1)      The Board shall have the power to acquire, hold, rent, encumber, alienate, and otherwise deal with real property in the same manner as a private person or corporation, subject only to approval of the Governor and the Council of State. Collateral pledged by the Board for an encumbrance is limited to the assets, income, and revenues of the Board.

(h2)      The Board may employ legal counsel and clerical and technical assistance, and fix the compensation therefor, and incur such other expenses as may be deemed necessary in the performance of its duties and the enforcement of the provisions of this Article or as otherwise required by law and as may be necessary to carry out the powers herein conferred.

(i)         The Board may perform such other acts and exercise such other powers and duties as may be provided elsewhere in this Article or otherwise by law and as may be necessary to carry out the powers herein conferred."

SECTION 3.  G.S. 90-210.25 reads as rewritten:

" 90-210.25.  Licensing.

(a)        Qualifications, Examinations, Resident Traineeship and Licensure. -

(1)        To be licensed for the practice of funeral directing under this Article, a person must:

a.         Be at least 18 years of age.

b.         Be of good moral character.

c.         Be a graduate of a Funeral Director Program at a mortuary science college approved by the Board or a school of mortuary science accredited by the American Board of Funeral Service Education. Have completed a minimum of 32 semester hours or 48 quarter hours of instruction, including the subjects set out in sub-part e.1. of this subdivision, as prescribed by a mortuary science college approved by the Board or a school of mortuary science accredited by the American Board of Funeral Service Education.

d.         Have completed 12 months of resident traineeship as a funeral director, pursuant to the procedures and conditions set out in G.S. 90-210.25(a)(4), either before or after satisfying the educational requirement under sub-subdivision c. of this subdivision.

e.         Have passed an oral or written funeral director examination on the following subjects:

1.         Psychology, sociology, pathology, funeral directing, business law, funeral law, funeral management, and accounting.

2.         Repealed by Session Laws 1997-399, s. 5.

3.         Laws of North Carolina Carolina, the standards set forth in Funeral Industry Practices, 16 C.F.R. Part 453 (1984), pursuant to its most recent version, and rules of the Board and other agencies dealing with the care, transportation and disposition of dead human bodies.

(2)        To be licensed for the practice of embalming under this Article, a person must:

a.         Be at least 18 years of age.

b.         Be of good moral character.

c.         Be a graduate of a mortuary science college approved by the Board.

d.         Have completed 12 months of resident traineeship as an embalmer pursuant to the procedures and conditions set out in G.S. 90-210.25(a)(4), either before or after satisfying the educational requirement under sub-subdivision c. of this subdivision.

e.         Have passed an oral or written embalmer examination on the following subjects:

1.         Embalming, restorative arts, chemistry, pathology, microbiology, and anatomy.

2.         Repealed by Session Laws 1997-399, s. 6.

3.         Laws of North Carolina Carolina, the standards set forth in Funeral Industry Practices, 16 C.F.R. Part 453 (1984), pursuant to its most recent version, and rules of the Board and other agencies dealing with the care, transportation and disposition of dead human bodies.

(3)        To be licensed for the practice of funeral service under this Article, a person must:

a.         Be at least 18 years of age.

b.         Be of good moral character.

c.         Be a graduate of and receive an associate degree from a mortuary science college approved by the Board or a school of mortuary science accredited by the American Board of Funeral Service Education. Have completed a minimum of 60 semester hours or 90 quarter hours of instruction, including the subjects set out in sub-part e.1. of this subdivision, as prescribed by a mortuary science college approved by the Board or a school of mortuary science accredited by the American Board of Funeral Service Education.

d.         Have completed 12 months of resident traineeship as a funeral service licensee, pursuant to the procedures and conditions set out in G.S. 90-210.25(a)(4), either before or after satisfying the educational requirement under sub-subdivision c. of this subdivision.

e.         Have passed an oral or written funeral service examination on the following subjects:

1.         Psychology, sociology, funeral directing, business law, funeral law, funeral management, and accounting.

2.         Embalming, restorative arts, chemistry, pathology, microbiology, and anatomy.

3.         Repealed by Session Laws 1997-399, s. 7.

4.         Laws of North Carolina Carolina, the standards set forth in Funeral Industry Practices, 16 C.F.R. Part 453 (1984), pursuant to its most recent version, and rules of the Board and other agencies dealing with the care, transportation and disposition of dead human bodies.

(4)       a.         A person desiring to become a resident trainee shall apply to the Board on a form provided by the Board. The application shall state that the applicant is not less than 18 years of age, of good moral character, and is the graduate of a high school or the equivalent thereof, and shall indicate the licensee under whom the applicant expects to train. A person training to become an embalmer may serve under either a licensed embalmer or a funeral service licensee. A person training to become a funeral director may serve under either a licensed funeral director or a funeral service licensee. A person training to become a funeral service licensee shall serve under a funeral service licensee. The application must be sustained by oath of the applicant and be accompanied by the appropriate fee. When the Board is satisfied as to the qualifications of an applicant it shall instruct the secretary to issue a certificate of resident traineeship.

b.         Within 30 days of a resident trainee leaving the proctorship of the licensee under whom the trainee has worked, the licensee shall file with the Board an affidavit showing the length of time served with the licensee by the trainee, and the affidavit shall be made a matter of record in the Board's office. The licensee shall deliver a copy of the affidavit to the trainee.

c.         A person who has not completed the traineeship and wishes to do so under a licensee other than the one whose name appears on the original certificate may reapply to the Board for approval.

d.         A certificate of resident traineeship shall be signed by the resident trainee and upon payment of the renewal fee shall be renewable one year after the date of original registration; but the certificate may not be renewed more than two times. The Board shall mail to each registered trainee at his last known address a notice that the renewal fee is due and that, if not paid within 30 days of the notice, the certificate will be canceled. A late fee, in addition to the renewal fee, shall be charged for a late renewal, but the renewal of the registration of any resident trainee who is engaged in active service in the  Armedthe Armed Forces of the United States at the time renewal is due may, at the discretion of the Board, be held in abeyance for the duration of that service without penalties. No credit shall be allowed for the 12-month period of resident traineeship that shall have been completed more than five years preceding the examination for a license. However, any resident trainee whom G.S. 105-249.2 grants an extension of time to file a tax return shall be allowed an extension of time to retain credit equal to the number of days of active deployment.

e.         All registered resident trainees shall report to the Board at least once every month during traineeship upon forms provided by the Board listing the work which has been completed during the preceding month of resident traineeship. The Board may set and collect a late fee not to exceed fifty dollars ($50.00) for each work report filed after the date the report is due. The data contained in the reports shall be certified as correct by the licensee under whom the trainee has served during the period and by the licensed person who is managing the funeral service establishment. Each report shall list the following:

1.         For funeral director trainees, the conduct of any funerals during the relevant time period,

2.         For embalming trainees, the embalming of any bodies during the relevant time period,

3.         For funeral service trainees, both of the activities named in 1 and 2 of this subsection, engaged in during the relevant time period.

f.          To meet the resident traineeship requirements of G.S. 90-210.25(a)(1), G.S. 90-210.25(a)(2) and G.S. 90-210.25(a)(3) the following must be shown by the affidavit(s) of the licensee(s) under whom the trainee worked:

1.         That the funeral director trainee has, under supervision, assisted in directing at least 25 funerals during the resident traineeship,

2.         That the embalmer trainee has, under supervision, assisted in embalming at least 25 bodies during the resident traineeship,

3.         That the funeral service trainee has, under supervision, assisted in directing at least 25 funerals and, under supervision, assisted in embalming at least 25 bodies during the resident traineeship.

g.         The Board may suspend or revokerevoke, suspend, or refuse to issue or renew a certificate of resident traineeship for violation of any provision of this Article.or place a trainee on probation for any violation of this Article or rules adopted by the Board. The Board may determine the length of any revocation, suspension, refusal to issue or renew, or probation and impose conditions on probation and reinstatement as the Board deems appropriate.

h.         Each sponsor for a registered resident trainee must during the period of sponsorship be actively employed with a funeral establishment. The traineeship shall be a primary vocation of the trainee.

i.          Only one resident trainee may register and serve at any one time under any one person licensed under this Article.

j.,         k. Repealed by Session Laws 1991, c. 528, s. 4.

l.          The Board shall register no more than one resident trainee at a funeral establishment that served 100 or fewer families during the 12 months immediately preceding the date of the application, and shall register no more than one resident trainee for each additional 100 families served at the funeral establishment during the 12 months immediately preceding the date of the application.

(5)        The Board by regulation may recognize other examinations that the Board deems equivalent to its own.

a.         All licenses shall be signed by the president and secretary of the Board and the seal of the Board affixed thereto. All licenses shall be issued, renewed or duplicated for a period not exceeding one year upon payment of the renewal fee, and all licenses, renewals or duplicates thereof shall expire and terminate the thirty-first day of December following the date of their issue unless sooner revoked and canceled; provided, that the date of expiration may be changed by unanimous consent of the Board and upon 90 days' written notice of such change to all persons licensed for the practice of funeral directing, embalming and funeral service in this State.

b.         The holder of any license issued by the Board who shall fail to renew the same on or before February January 1 of the calendar year for which the license is to be renewed shall have forfeited and surrendered the license as of that date. No license forfeited or surrendered pursuant to the preceding sentence shall be reinstated by the Board unless it is shown to the Board that the applicant has, throughout the period of forfeiture, engaged full time in another state of the United States or the District of Columbia in the practice to which the applicant's North Carolina license applies and has completed for each such year continuing education substantially equivalent in the opinion of the Board to that required of North Carolina licensees; or has completed in North Carolina a total number of hours of accredited continuing education computed by multiplying five times the number of years of forfeiture; or has passed the North Carolina examination for the forfeited license. No additional resident traineeship shall be required. The applicant shall be required to pay all delinquent annual renewal fees and a reinstatement fee. The Board may waive the provisions of this section for an applicant for a forfeiture which occurred during the applicant's service in the Armed Forces of the United States provided the applicant applies within six months following severance therefrom.

c.         All licensees now or hereafter licensed in North Carolina shall take continuing education courses in subjects relating to the practice of the profession for which they are licensed, to the end that the benefits of learning and reviewing skills will be utilized and applied to assure proper service to the public.

d.         As a prerequisite to the annual renewal of a license, the licensee must complete, during the year immediately preceding renewal, at least five hours of continuing education courses, of which the Board may require licensees to take up to two hours specified by the Board. All continuing education courses must be approved by the Board prior to enrollment. A licensee who completes more than five hours in a year may carry over a maximum of five hours as a credit to the following year's requirement. A licensee who is issued an initial license on or after July 1 does not have to satisfy the continuing education requirement for that year.

e.         The Board shall not renew a license unless fulfillment of the continuing education requirement has been certified to it on a form provided by the Board, but the Board may waive this requirement for renewal in cases of certified illness or undue hardship or where the licensee lives outside of North Carolina and does not practice in North Carolina, and the Board shall waive the requirement for all licensees who were licensed on or before December 31, 2003, and have been licensed in North Carolina for a continuous period of 25 years or more, for all licensees who are licensed on or after January 1, 2004, who have been licensed for a continuous period of 25 years or more and have attained the age of 60 years, and for all licensees who are, at the time of renewal, members of the General Assembly.

f.          The Board shall cause to be established and offered to the licensees, each calendar year, at least eight hours of continuing education courses. The Board may charge licensees attending these courses a reasonable registration fee in order to meet the expenses thereof and may also meet those expenses from other funds received under the provisions of this Article.

g.         Any person who having been previously licensed by the Board as a funeral director or embalmer prior to July 1, 1975, shall not be required to satisfy the requirements herein for licensure as a funeral service licensee, but shall be entitled to have such license renewed upon making proper application therefor and upon payment of the renewal fee provided by the provisions of this Article. Persons previously licensed by the Board as a funeral director may engage in funeral directing, and persons previously licensed by the Board as an embalmer may engage in embalming. Any person having been previously licensed by the Board as both a funeral director and an embalmer may upon application therefor receive a license as a funeral service licensee.

h.         The Department of Justice may provide a criminal record check to the Board for a person who has applied for a new or renewal license, or certification through the Board. The Board shall provide to the Department of Justice, along with the request, the fingerprints of the applicant, any additional information required by the Department of Justice, and a form signed by the applicant consenting to the check of the criminal record and to the use of the fingerprints and other identifying information required by the State or national repositories. The applicant's fingerprints shall be forwarded to the State Bureau of Investigation for a search of the State's criminal history record file, and the State Bureau of Investigation shall forward a set of the fingerprints to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for a national criminal history check. The Board shall keep all information pursuant to this subdivision privileged, in accordance with applicable State law and federal guidelines, and the information shall be confidential and shall not be a public record under Chapter 132 of the General Statutes.

The Department of Justice may charge each applicant a fee for conducting the checks of criminal history records authorized by this subdivision.

(a1)      Inactive Licenses. - Any person holding a license issued by the Board for funeral directing, for embalming, or for the practice of funeral service may apply for an inactive license in the same category as the active license held. The inactive license is renewable annually. Continuing education is not required for the renewal of an inactive license. The holder of an inactive license may not engage in any activity requiring an active license. The holder of an inactive license may apply for an active license in the same category, and the Board shall issue an active license if the applicant has completed a total number of hours of accredited continuing education equal to five times the number of years the applicant held the inactive license. No application fee is required for the reinstatement of an active license pursuant to this subsection. The holder of an inactive license who returns to active status shall surrender the inactive license to the Board.

(a2)      In order to engage in the practice of funeral directing or funeral service, such a licensee must own, be employed by, or otherwise be an agent of a licensed funeral establishment; except that such a licensee may practice funeral directing or funeral service if:

(1)        Employed by a college of mortuary science; or

(2)        The licensee:licensee does all of the following:

a.         Maintains all of his or her business records at a location made known to the Board and available for inspection by the Board under the same terms and conditions as the business records of a licensed funeral establishment;establishment.

b.         Complies with rules and regulations imposed on funeral establishments and the funeral profession that are designed to protect consumers, to include, but not be limited to, the Federal Trade Commission's laws and rules requiring General Price Lists and Statements of Goods and Services; andServices.

c.         Pays to the Board the funeral establishment license fee required by law and set by the Board.

d.         Obtains and maintains a professional liability insurance policy with liability limits of at least one million dollars ($1,000,000). Certificates of such insurance shall be submitted to the Board within 30 days of the initial registration of the licensee by the Board, shall be made available during any inspection by the Board, and shall be submitted to the Board upon request. The licensee shall notify the Board in writing within 30 days of any change in the insurer or any cancellation or suspension of the policy.

e.         Provides funeral directing services to no more than two funeral establishments and reports the names and addresses of such establishments to the Board annually as a condition of renewal of the registration. The licensee shall notify the Board in writing within 30 days of any change in the funeral establishments with which the licensee has contracted or affiliated.

Nothing in this subdivision shall preclude a licensee from arranging cremations and cremating human remains while employed by a crematory.

(b)        Persons Licensed under the Laws of Other Jurisdictions. -

(1)        The Board shall grant licenses to funeral directors, embalmers and funeral service licensees, licensed in other states, territories, the District of Columbia, and foreign countries, when it is shown that the applicant holds a valid license as a funeral director, embalmer or funeral service licensee issued by the other jurisdiction, has demonstrated knowledge of the laws and rules governing the profession in North Carolina and has submitted proof of his good moral character; and either that the applicant has continuously practiced the profession in the othera jurisdiction where funeral directors, embalmers, and funeral service licensees are required to hold a license to practice for at least three years immediately preceding his application, or the Board has determined that the licensing requirements for the other jurisdiction are substantially similar to those of North Carolina.

(2)        The Board shall periodically review the mortuary science licensing requirements of other jurisdictions and shall determine which licensing requirements are substantially similar to the requirements of North Carolina.

(3)        The Board may issue special permits, to be known as courtesy cards, permitting nonresident funeral directors, embalmers and funeral service licensees to remove bodies from and to arrange and direct funerals and embalm bodies in this State, but these privileges shall not include the right to establish a place of business in or engage generally in the business of funeral directing and embalming in this State. Except for special permits issued by the Board for teaching continuing education programs and for work in connection with disasters, no special permits may be issued to nonresident funeral directors, embalmers, and funeral service licensees from states that do not issue similar courtesy cards to persons licensed in North Carolina pursuant to this Article.

(c)        Registration, Filing and Transportation. -

(1)        The holder of any license granted by this State for those within the funeral service profession or renewal thereof provided for in this Article shall cause registration to be filed in the office of the board of health of the county or city in which he practices his profession, or if there be no board of health in such county or city, at the office of the clerk of the superior court of such county. All such licenses, certificates, duplicates and renewals thereof shall be displayed in a conspicuous place in the funeral establishment where the holder renders service.

(2)        It shall be unlawful for any railway agent, express agency, baggage master, conductor or other person acting as such, to receive the dead body of any person for shipment or transportation by railway or other public conveyance, to a point outside of this State, unless the body is accompanied by a burial-transit permit.

(3)        The "transportation or removal of a dead human body" shall mean the removal of a dead human body for a fee from the location of the place of death or discovery of death or the transportation of the body to or from a medical facility, funeral establishment or facility, crematory or related holding facility, place of final disposition, or place designated by the Medical Examiner for examination or autopsy of the dead human body.

(4)        Any individual, not otherwise exempt from this subsection, shall apply for and receive a permit from the Board before engaging in the transportation or removal of a dead human body in this State. Unless otherwise exempt from this subsection, no corporation or other business entity shall engage in the transportation or removal of a dead human body unless it has in its employ at least one individual who holds a permit issued under this section. No individual permit holder shall engage in the transportation or removal of a dead human body for more than one person, firm, or corporation without first providing the Board with written notification of the name and physical address of each such employer.

(5)        The following persons shall be exempt from the permit requirements of this section but shall otherwise be subject to subdivision (9) of this subsection and any rules relating to the proper handling, care, removal, or transportation of a dead human body:

a.         Licensees under this Article and their employees.

b.         Employees of common carriers.

c.         Except as provided in sub-subdivision (6)c. of this section, employees of the State and its agencies and employees of local governments and their agencies.

d.         Funeral directors licensed in another state and their employees.

(6)        The following persons shall be exempt from this section:

a.         Emergency medical technicians, rescue squad workers, volunteer and paid firemen, and law enforcement officers while acting within the scope of their employment.

b.         Employees of public or private hospitals, nursing homes, or long-term care facilities, while handling a dead human body within such facility or while acting within the scope of their employment.

c.         State and county medical examiners and their investigators.

d.         Any individual transporting cremated remains.

e.         Any individual transporting or removing a dead human body of their immediate family or next of kin.

f.          Any individual who has exhibited special care and concern for the decedent.

(7)        Individuals eligible to receive a permit under this section for the transportation or removal of a dead human body for a fee, shall:

a.         Be at least 18 years of age.

b.         Possess and maintain a valid drivers license issued by this State and provide proof of all liability insurance required for the registration of any vehicle in which the person intends to engage in the business of the removal or transportation of a dead human body.

c.         Affirmatively state under oath that the person has read and understands the statutes and rules relating to the removal and transportation of dead human bodies and any guidelines as may be adopted by the Board.

d.         Provide three written character references on a form prescribed by the Board, one of which must be from a licensed funeral director.

e.         Be of good moral character.

(8)        The permit issued under this section shall expire on December 31 of each year. The application fee for the individual permit shall not exceed one hundred twenty-five dollars ($125.00). A fee, not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100.00), in addition to the renewal fee not to exceed seventy-five dollars ($75.00), shall be charged for any application for renewal received by the Board after February 1 of each year.made on or after January 1 to renew an expired permit.

(9)        No person shall transport a dead human body in the open cargo area or passenger area of a vehicle or in any vehicle in which the body may be viewed by the public. Any person removing or transporting a dead human body shall either cover the body, place it upon a stretcher designed for the purpose of transporting humans or dead human bodies in a vehicle, and secure such stretcher in the vehicle used for transportation, or shall enclose the body in a casket or container designed for common carrier transportation, and secure the casket or container in the vehicle used for transportation. No person shall fail to treat a dead human body with respect at all times. No person shall take a photograph or video recording of a dead human body without the consent of a member of the deceased's immediate family or next of kin or other authorizing agent.

(10)      The Board may adopt rules under this section including permit application procedures and the proper procedures for the removal, handling, and transportation of dead human bodies. The Board shall consult with the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner before initiating rule making under this section and before adopting any rules pursuant to this section. Nothing in this section prohibits the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner from adopting policies and procedures regarding the removal, transportation, or handling of a dead human body under the jurisdiction of that office that are more stringent than the laws in this section or any rules adopted under this section. Any violation of this section or rules adopted under this section may be punished by the Board by a suspension or revocation of the permit to transport or remove dead human bodies or by a term of probation. The Board may, in lieu of any disciplinary measure, accept a penalty not to exceed five thousand dollars ($5,000) per violation.

(11)      Each applicant for a permit shall provide the Board with the applicant's home address, name and address of any corporation or business entity employing such individual for the removal or transportation of dead human bodies, and the make, year, model, and license plate number of any vehicle in which a dead human body is transported. A permittee shall provide written notification to the Board of any change in the information required to be provided to the Board by this section or by the application for a permit within 30 days after such change takes place.

(12)      If any person shall engage in or hold himself out as engaging in the business of transportation or removal of a dead human body without first having received a permit under this section, the person shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.

(13)      The Board shall have the authority to inspect any place or premises that the business of removing or transporting a dead human body is carried out and shall also have the right of inspection of any vehicle and equipment used by a permittee for the removal or transportation of a dead human body.

(14)      The Board may suspend, revoke, or refuse to issue or renew the permit, place the permittee on a term of probation, or accept a civil penalty not to exceed five thousand dollars ($5,000) in conjunction with a term of probation or in lieu of other disciplinary action when it finds that any person permitted to transport dead human bodies has engaged in any of the following acts:

a.         Conviction of a felony or a crime involving fraud or moral turpitude.

b.         Denial, suspension, or revocation of an occupational or business license by another jurisdiction.

c.         Fraud or misrepresentation in obtaining or renewing a permit.

d.         False or misleading advertising as the holder of a permit.

e.         Solicitation of dead human bodies by the permittee or the permittee's agents, assistants, or employees. However, this sub-subdivision shall not be construed to prohibit general advertising.

f.          Gross immorality, including being under the influence of alcohol or drugs while handling or transporting dead human bodies.

g.         Failing to treat a dead human body with respect at all times.

h.         Violating or cooperating with others to violate any of the provisions of this Article, any rules and regulations of the Board, or any State law or municipal or county ordinance or regulation affecting the handling, custody, care, or transport of dead human bodies.

i.          Refusing to surrender promptly the custody of a dead human body upon the express order of the person lawfully entitled to the custody of the body.

j.          Indecent exposure or exhibition of a dead human body while in the custody or control of a permittee.

k.         Practicing funeral directing, funeral service, or embalming without a license.

            The Board shall have the authority to determine the length and conditions of any period of revocation, suspension, refusal to issue or renew, or probation.

(d)        Establishment Permit. -

(1)        No person, firm or corporation shall conduct, maintain, manage or operate a funeral establishment unless a permit for that establishment has been issued by the Board and is conspicuously displayed in the establishment. Each funeral establishment at a specific location shall be deemed to be a separate entity and shall require a separate permit and compliance with the requirements of this Article.

(2)        A permit shall be issued when:

a.         It is shown that the funeral establishment has in charge a person, known as a manager, licensed for the practice of funeral directing or funeral service, who shall not be permitted to manage more than one funeral establishment. The manager shall be charged with overseeing the daily operation of the funeral establishment. If the manager leaves the employment of the funeral establishment and is the only licensee employed who is eligible to serve as manager, the funeral establishment may operate without a manager for a period not to exceed 30 days so long as: (i) the funeral establishment retains one or more licensees to perform all services requiring a license under this Article; (ii) the licensees are not practicing under the exception authorized by G.S. 90-210.25(a2) and would otherwise be eligible to serve as manager; and (iii) the funeral establishment registers the name of the licensees with the Board.

b.         The Board receives a list of the names of all part-time and full-time licensees employed by the establishment.

c.         It is shown that the funeral establishment satisfies the requirements of G.S. 90-210.27A.

d.         The Board receives payment of the permit fee.

(3)        Applications for funeral establishment permits shall be made on forms provided by the Board and filed with the Board by the owner, a partner, a member of the limited liability company, or an officer of the corporation by January 1 of each year, and shall be accompanied by the application fee or renewal fee, as the case may be. All permits shall expire on December 31 of each year. If the renewal application and renewal fee are not received in the Board's office on or before February 1,after January 1, a late renewal fee, in addition to the regular renewal fee, shall be charged.

(4)        The Board may place on probation, refuse to issue or renew, suspend, or revoke a permit when an owner, partner, manager, member, operator, or officer of the funeral establishment violates any provision of this Article or any regulations of the Board, or when any agent or employee of the funeral establishment, with the consent of any person, firm or corporation operating the funeral establishment, violates any of those provisions, rules or regulations. In any case in which the Board is entitled to place a funeral establishment permittee on a term of probation, the Board may also impose a penalty of not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000) in conjunction with the probation. In any case in which the Board is entitled to suspend, revoke, or refuse to renew a permit, the Board may accept from the funeral establishment permittee an offer to pay a penalty of not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000). The Board may either accept a penalty or revoke or refuse to renew a license, but not both. Any penalty under this subdivision may be in addition to any penalty assessed against one or more licensed individuals employed by the funeral establishment. The Board shall have the authority to determine the length and conditions of any period of revocation, suspension, refusal to issue or renew, or probation.

(5)        Funeral establishment permits are not transferable. A new application for a permit shall be made to the Board within 30 days of a change of ownership of a funeral establishment. The Board shall not issue more than one funeral establishment permit to the same building or property.

(6)        A funeral establishment shall not contract or affiliate with more than two licensees that are permitted to engage in the practice of funeral directing or funeral service under G.S. 90-210.25(a2)(2). Any funeral establishment that contracts or affiliates with a licensee described in G.S. 90-210.25(a2)(2) shall report the names and addresses of such licensees to the Board annually as a condition of renewal of the funeral establishment permit, and the funeral establishment shall notify the Board in writing within 30 days of any change in such licensees with whom the funeral establishment has contracted or affiliated.

(d1)      Embalming Outside Establishment. - An embalmer who engages in embalming in a facility other than a funeral establishment or in the residence of the deceased person shall, no later than January 1 of each year, register the facility with the Board on forms provided by the Board.

(e)        Revocation; Suspension; Compromise; Disclosure. -

(1)        Whenever the Board finds that an applicant for a license or a person to whom a license has been issued by the Board is guilty of any of the following acts or omissions and the Board also finds that the person has thereby become unfit to practice, the Board may suspend or revoke the license or refuse to issue or renew the license, in accordance with the procedures set out in Chapter 150B of the General Statutes:

a.         Conviction of a felony or a crime involving fraud or moral turpitude.

a1.       Denial, suspension, or revocation of an occupational or business license by another jurisdiction.

b.         Fraud or misrepresentation in obtaining or renewing a license or in the practice of funeral service.

c.         False or misleading advertising as the holder of a license.

d.         Solicitation of dead human bodies by the licensee, his agents, assistants, or employees; but this paragraph shall not be construed to prohibit general advertising by the licensee.

e.         Employment directly or indirectly of any resident trainee agent, assistant or other person, on a part-time or full-time basis, or on commission, for the purpose of calling upon individuals or institutions by whose influence dead human bodies may be turned over to a particular licensee.

f.          The payment or offer of payment of a commission by the licensee, his agents, assistants or employees for the purpose of securing business except as authorized by Article 13D of this Chapter.

g.         Gross immorality, including being under the influence of alcohol or drugs while practicing funeral service.

h.         Aiding or abetting an unlicensed person to perform services under this Article, including the use of a picture or name in connection with advertisements or other written material published or caused to be published by the licensee.

i.          Failing to treat a dead human body with respect at all times.

j.          Violating or cooperating with others to violate any of the provisions of this Article or Articles 13D, 13E, or 13F of Chapter 90 of the General Statutes, any rules and regulations of the Board, or the standards set forth in Funeral Industry Practices, 16 C.F.R. 453 (1984), as amended from time to time.

k.         Violation of any State law or municipal or county ordinance or regulation affecting the handling, custody, care or transportation of dead human bodies.

l.          Refusing to surrender promptly the custody of a dead human body or cremated remains upon the express order of the person lawfully entitled to the custody thereof.

m.        Knowingly making any false statement on a certificate of death or violating or cooperating with others to violate any provision of Article 4 or 16 of Chapter 130A of the General Statutes or any rules or regulations promulgated under those Articles as amended from time to time.

n.         Indecent exposure or exhibition of a dead human body while in the custody or control of a licensee.

o.         Failure to refund any insurance proceeds received as consideration in excess of the funeral contract purchase price within 60 days of receipt.

p.         Failure to provide, within a reasonable time, either the funeral goods and services purchased under a funeral contract or a refund of the purchase price for the goods or services.

q.         Violation of G.S. 58-58-97.

In any case in which the Board is entitled to suspend, revoke or refuse to renew a license, the Board may accept from the licensee an offer to pay a penalty of not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000). The Board may either accept a penalty or revoke or refuse to renew a license, but not both.

(2)        Where the Board finds that a licensee is guilty of one or more of the acts or omissions listed in subdivision (e)(1) of this section but it is determined by the Board that the licensee has not thereby become unfit to practice, the Board may place the licensee on a term of probation in accordance with the procedures set out in Chapter 150B of the General Statutes. In any case in which the Board is entitled to place a licensee on a term of probation, the Board may also impose a penalty of not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000) in conjunction with the probation. The Board may also require satisfactory completion of remedial or educational training as a prerequisite to license reinstatement or for completing the term of probation. The Board shall have the authority to determine the length and conditions of any period of suspension, revocation, probation, or refusal to issue or renew a license.

No person licensed under this Article shall remove or cause to be embalmed a dead human body when he or she has information indicating crime or violence of any sort in connection with the cause of death, nor shall a dead human body be cremated, until permission of the State or county medical examiner has first been obtained. However, nothing in this Article shall be construed to alter the duties and authority now vested in the office of the coroner.

No funeral service establishment shall accept a dead human body from any public officer (excluding the State or county medical examiner or his agent), or employee or from the official of any institution, hospital or nursing home, or from a physician or any person having a professional relationship with a decedent, without having first made due inquiry as to the desires of the persons who have the legal authority to direct the disposition of the decedent's body. If any persons are found, their authority and directions shall govern the disposal of the remains of the decedent. Any funeral service establishment receiving the remains in violation of this subsection shall make no charge for any service in connection with the remains prior to delivery of the remains as stipulated by the persons having legal authority to direct the disposition of the body. This section shall not prevent any funeral service establishment from charging and being reimbursed for services rendered in connection with the removal of the remains of any deceased person in case of accidental or violent death, and rendering necessary professional services required until the persons having legal authority to direct the disposition of the body have been notified.

When and where a licensee presents a selection of funeral merchandise to the public to be used in connection with the service to be provided by the licensee or an establishment as licensed under this Article, a card or brochure shall be directly associated with each item of merchandise setting forth the price of the service using said merchandise and listing the services and other merchandise included in the price, if any. When there are separate prices for the merchandise and services, such cards or brochures shall indicate the price of the merchandise and of the items separately priced.

At the time funeral arrangements are made and prior to the time of rendering the service and providing the merchandise, a funeral director or funeral service licensee shall give or cause to be given to the person or persons making such arrangements a written statement duly signed by a licensee of said funeral establishment showing the price of the service as selected and what services are included therein, the price of each of the supplemental items of services or merchandise requested, and the amounts involved for each of the items for which the funeral establishment will advance moneys as an accommodation to the person making arrangements, insofar as any of the above items can be specified at that time. If fees charged by a finance company for expediting payment of life insurance proceeds to the establishment will be passed on to the person or persons responsible for payment of the funeral expenses, information regarding the fees, including the total dollar amount of the fee, shall be disclosed in writing. The statement shall have printed, typed or stamped on the face thereof: "This statement of disclosure is provided under the requirements of North Carolina G.S. 90-210.25(e)." The Board may prescribe other disclosures that a licensee shall give to consumers upon finding that the disclosure is necessary to protect public health, safety, and welfare.

(e1)      The taking or recovery of human tissue at a funeral establishment by any person is prohibited. The prohibition does not apply to any of the following:

(1)        A licensee under this Article that performs embalming or otherwise prepares a dead human body in the ordinary course of business.

(2)        The Chief Medical Examiner or anyone acting under the Chief Medical Examiner's authority.

(3)        An autopsy technician who takes or recovers tissue from a dead human body if all of the following apply:

a.         The taking or recovery is the subject of an academic research program.

b.         The academic research program has appropriate Institutional Review Board supervision.

c.         The academic research program has obtained informed consent of the donor or the person legally authorized to provide consent.

No funeral establishment or person licensed under this Article shall permit the taking or recovery of human tissue from a dead human body in its custody or control for human transplantation purposes or for research purposes, except that a funeral establishment or person licensed under this Article may permit an autopsy technician to take or recover tissue at a funeral establishment pursuant to subdivision (3) of this subsection. No funeral establishment or any of its licensees, agents, or employees shall accept, solicit, or offer to accept any payment, gratuity, commission, or compensation of any kind for referring potential tissue donors to a tissue bank or tissue broker or to an eye bank or eye broker. For purposes of this subsection, the term "tissue" does not include an eye.

(f)         Unlawful Practices. - The following shall constitute unlawful practices:

(1)        If any person shall practice or hold himself or herself out as practicing the profession or art of embalming, funeral directing or practice of funeral service or operating a funeral establishment without having complied with the provisions of this Article, the person shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.

(2)        Any person who knowingly or willfully abuses, mutilates, or fails to treat with reasonable care a dead human body in a person's custody shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor. It shall not be a violation of this subdivision for a person licensed to practice embalming or funeral service under this Article to embalm a dead human body consistent with techniques of embalming generally recognized by embalmer and funeral service licensees under this Article or for a person licensed to practice funeral directing or funeral service to exhibit a dead human body consistent with lawful instructions from the person authorized to dispose of the dead human body.

(g)        Whenever it shall appear to the Board that any person, firm or corporation has violated, threatens to violate or is violating any provisions of this Article, the Board may apply to the courts of the State for a restraining order and injunction to restrain these practices. If upon application the court finds that any provision of this Article is being violated, or a violation is threatened, the court shall issue an order restraining and enjoining the violations, and this relief may be granted regardless of whether criminal prosecution is instituted under the provisions of this subsection. The venue for actions brought under this subsection shall be the superior court of any county in which the acts are alleged to have been committed or in the county where the defendant in the action resides."

SECTION 4.  G.S. 90-210.27A reads as rewritten:

" 90-210.27A.  Funeral establishments.

(a)        Every funeral establishment shall contain a preparation room which is strictly private, of suitable size for the embalming of dead bodies. Each preparation room shall:

(1)        Contain one standard type operating table.

(2)        Contain facilities for adequate drainage.

(3)        Contain a sanitary waste receptacle.

(4)        Contain an instrument sterilizer.

(5)        Have wall-to-wall floor covering of tile, concrete, or other material which can be easily cleaned.

(6)        Be kept in sanitary condition and subject to inspection by the Board or its agents at all times.

(7)        Have a placard or sign on the door indicating that the preparation room is private.

(8)        Have a proper ventilation or purification system to maintain a nonhazardous level of airborne contamination.

(a1)      If the preparation room of a funeral establishment is damaged or destroyed by fire, weather, or other natural disaster, the Board may suspend the requirements of subsection (a) of this section in part or in whole for a period not to exceed 180 days, if the funeral establishment complies with the requirements of G.S. 90-210.25(d1) and all other laws, rules, regulations, and requirements of the Division of Health Services and of the city, town, or county where the funeral establishment is located. To receive a suspension of more than 90 days, the applicant must show good cause for additional time.

(b)        No one is allowed in the preparation room while a dead human body is being prepared except licensees, resident trainees, public officials in the discharge of their duties, members of the medical profession, officials of the funeral home, next of kin, or other legally authorized persons.

(c)        Every funeral establishment shall contain a reposing room for dead human bodies, of suitable size to accommodate a casket and visitors.

(d)        Repealed by Session Laws 1997-399, s. 14.

(e)        If a funeral establishment is solely owned by a natural person, that person must be licensed by the Board as a funeral director or a funeral service licensee. If it is owned by a partnership, at least one partner must be licensed by the Board as a funeral director or a funeral service licensee. If it is owned by a corporation, the president, vice-president, or the chairman of the board of directors must be licensed by the Board as a funeral director or a funeral service licensee. If it is owned by a limited liability company, at least one member must be licensed by the Board as a funeral director or a funeral service licensee. The licensee required by this subsection must be actively engaged in the operation of the funeral establishment.

(f)         If a funeral establishment uses the name of a living person in the name under which it does business, that person must be licensed by the Board as a funeral director or a funeral service licensee.

(g)        No funeral establishment shall own, operate, or maintain a chapel without first having registered the name, location, and ownership thereof with the Board; own or maintain more than two chapels, or own or maintain a chapel outside of a radius of 50 miles from the funeral establishment. A duly licensed person may use a chapel for making arrangements for funeral services, selling funeral merchandise to the public by photograph, video, or computer based presentation, or making financial arrangements for the rendering of the service or sale of supplies, provided that the uses are secondary and incidental to and do not interfere with the reposing of dead human bodies, visitation, or funeral ceremony. A chapel registration shall expire on December 31 of each calendar year. On or after January 1 for the calendar year for which the chapel is to be registered, the registrant shall pay a late fee in addition to the renewal fee to register the chapel. The Board may suspend, revoke, refuse to issue or renew, or place on probation any funeral chapel registration for any violation of this Article or rules adopted by the Board and may determine the length and conditions of any discipline imposed.

(h)        All public health laws and rules apply to funeral establishments. In addition, all funeral establishments must comply with all of the standards established by the rules adopted by the Board.

(i)         No funeral establishment shall use an unregistered or misleading name. Misleading names include, but are not limited to, names in the plural form when there is only one funeral establishment, the use of names of deceased individuals, unless the establishment is licensed using the name at the time the new application is made, the use of names of individuals not associated with the establishment, and the use of the word "crematory" or "crematorium" in the name of a funeral establishment that does not own a crematory. If an owner of a funeral establishment owns more than one funeral establishment, the owner may not use the word "crematory" or "crematorium" in the name of more than one of its funeral establishments; except that each funeral home having a crematory on the premises may contain the term "crematory" or "crematorium" in its name.

(j)         A funeral establishment will not use any name other than the name by which it is properly registered with the Board.

(k)        A funeral establishment shall obtain and maintain a professional liability insurance policy with liability limits of at least one million dollars ($1,000,000). If the funeral establishment utilizes a licensee that is permitted to engage in the practice of funeral directing or funeral service under G.S. 90-210.25(a2)(2), the funeral establishment shall ensure that such licensee is named as an additional insured on the professional liability insurance policy. Certificates of such insurance shall be submitted to the Board within 30 days of the initial issuance of a funeral establishment permit, shall be made available during any inspection by the Board, and shall be submitted to the Board upon request. The funeral establishment shall notify the Board within 30 days of any change of insurer or any cancellation or suspension of the policy.

(l)         Human remains shall be stored in a licensed funeral establishment or licensed crematory when the remains are not in transit or at a gravesite, church, or other facility for a visitation or funeral service."

SECTION 5.  G.S. 90-210.28 reads as rewritten:

" 90-210.28.  Fees.

The Board may set and collect fees, not to exceed the following amounts:

Establishment permit

Application .......................................................................................... $400.00

Annual renewal ....................................................................................    250.00

Late renewal ........................................................................................    150.00

Establishment and embalming facility reinspection fee ....................................................    100.00

Funeral Industry Practices document reinspection fee ..25.00

Courtesy card

Application ..........................................................................................    100.00

Annual renewal ....................................................................................      75.00

Out-of-state licensee

Application ..........................................................................................    250.00

Embalmer, funeral director, funeral service

Application-North

Carolina-Resident ................................................................................    200.00

-Non-Resident .....................................................................................    250.00

Annual Renewal-embalmer or

funeral director .....................................................................................      75.00

Total fee, embalmer and funeral director

when both are held by the same person ................................................    100.00

-funeral service ....................................................................................    100.00

Inactive Status .....................................................................................      50.00

Reinstatement fee .................................................................................      50.00

Resident trainee permit

Application ..........................................................................................      50.00

Voluntary change in supervisor .............................................................      50.00

Annual renewal ....................................................................................      35.00

Late renewal ........................................................................................      25.00

Duplicate license certificate ...................................................................      25.00

Chapel registration

Application ..........................................................................................    150.00

Annual renewal ....................................................................................    100.00

Late renewal ........................................................................................      75.00

The Board shall provide, without charge, one copy of the current statutes and regulations relating to Funeral Service to every person applying for and paying the appropriate fees for licensing pursuant to this Article. The Board may charge all others requesting copies of the current statutes and regulations, and the licensees or applicants requesting additional copies, a fee equal to the costs of production and distribution of the requested documents."

SECTION 6.  G.S. 90-210.29B reads as rewritten:

" 90-210.29B.  Examination scores not Exemptions from public record.records.

(a)        The examination scores of applicants for licensure shall not be subject to the provisions of Chapter 132 of the General Statutes. The Board shall release to any person requesting examination scores whether or not the applicant has obtained a passing score at the time of the request.

(b)        Records, papers, and other documents containing information collected or compiled by the Board or its inspectors or employees as a result of a complaint, investigation, audit, or interview in connection with a licensee, permittee, or registrant, or any application for a license, permit, or registration, shall not be considered public records within the meaning of Chapter 132 of the General Statutes until the Board has taken final action in connection with the complaint, investigation, audit, or interview."

SECTION 7.  G.S. 90-210.61(a)(2) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       Preneed funeral funds are subject to the provisions of this Article and shall be deposited or applied as follows:

(2)        Notwithstanding For preneed funeral contracts executed before January 1, 2014, and notwithstanding any other provision of law, if a preneed funeral contract is funded by a trust deposit or trust deposits, a preneed licensee may retain, free of the trust, up to ten percent (10%) of any payments made on a preneed funeral contract, provided that the preneed licensee fully discloses in writing in advance to the preneed funeral contract purchaser the percentage of the payments to be retained. If there is no substitution pursuant to G.S. 90-210.63(a), the preneed licensee shall give credit for the amount retained upon the death of the preneed funeral contract beneficiary and performance of the preneed funeral contract."

SECTION 8.  G.S. 90-210.63(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       If the preneed funeral contract is irrevocable, the preneed funeral contract purchaser, or after his death the preneed funeral contract beneficiary or his legal representative, upon written notice to the financial institution or insurance company and the preneed licensee who is a party to the preneed funeral contract, may direct the substitution of a different funeral establishment to furnish funeral services and merchandise.

(1)        If the substitution is made after the death of the preneed funeral contract beneficiary, a funeral establishment providing any funeral services or merchandise need not be a preneed licensee under this Article to receive payment for such services or merchandise. The original contracting preneed licensee shall be entitled to payment for any services or merchandise provided pursuant to G.S. 90-210.65(d). If the substitution is made before the death of the preneed funeral contract beneficiary, the substitution must be to a preneed licensee. If the preneed funeral contract is funded by a trust deposit or deposits, the financial institution shall immediately pay the funds held to the original contracting preneed licensee.

(2)        The For preneed funeral contracts executed before January 1, 2014, the original contracting preneed licensee shall immediately pay all funds received to the successor funeral establishment designated. Regardless of whether the substitution is made before or after the death of the preneed funeral contract beneficiary, the original contracting preneed licensee shall not be required to give credit for the amount retained pursuant to G.S. 90-210.61(a)(2), except when there was a substitution under G.S. 90-210.68(d1) and (e). For preneed funeral contracts executed on or after January 1, 2014, the preneed licensee may retain an administrative fee not to exceed ten percent (10%) of the funds on deposit at the time of transfer if the amount of the fee is agreed upon by the parties in writing at the time the contract is executed, unless there was a substitution under G.S. 90-210.68(d1) and (e). Upon making payments pursuant to this subsection, the financial institution and the original contracting preneed licensee shall be relieved from all further contractual liability thereon.

(3)        If the preneed funeral contract is funded by a prearrangement insurance policy, the insurance company shall not pay any of the funds until the death of the preneed funeral contract beneficiary, and the insurance company shall pay the funds in accordance with the terms of the policy.

(4)        Any funeral establishment holding a permit under Article 13A of this Chapter that accepts the transfer of a preneed funeral contract after the death of the preneed contract beneficiary shall file the certificate of performance with the Board and mail a copy to the contracting preneed licensee. If the preneed funeral contract is performed by a funeral establishment in another state, the preneed licensee shall make reasonable efforts to obtain the information for the certificate of performance but shall file the certificate no later than the time allowed by G.S. 90-210.64."

SECTION 9.  Article 13D of Chapter 90 of the General Statutes is amended by adding the following new section to read:

" 90-210.63B.  Cancellation of insurance preneed contracts by preneed licensee.

A preneed licensee may cancel a preneed funeral contract by sending written notice first-class U.S. Mail, postage prepaid to the last known address of the preneed funeral contract purchaser, or after the purchaser's death, the preneed contract beneficiary or the beneficiary's legal representative, if all of the following conditions apply:

(1)        The preneed funeral contract beneficiary has not used the preneed funeral contract to qualify for benefits from the Department of Health and Human Services.

(2)        One or more insurance policies used as consideration for the preneed contract have been lapsed, revoked, or cancelled by the preneed contract purchaser.

(3)        The value of all insurance policies does not exceed five hundred dollars ($500.00)."

SECTION 10.  G.S. 90-210.64(d) reads as rewritten:

"(d)      When the balance of a preneed funeral fund is one hundred dollars ($100.00) one thousand dollars ($1,000) or less and is payable to the estate of a deceased preneed funeral contract beneficiary and there has been no representative of the estate appointed, the balance due may be paid directly to a beneficiary or to the beneficiaries of the estate. If the balance of a preneed funeral fund exceeds one hundred dollars ($100.00)one thousand dollars ($1,000) or is not payable to the estate, the balance must be paid into the office of the clerk of superior court in the county where probate proceedings could be filed for the deceased preneed funeral contract beneficiary."

SECTION 11.  G.S. 90-210.67 reads as rewritten:

" 90-210.67.  Application for license.

(a)        No person may offer or sell preneed funeral contracts or offer to make or make any funded funeral prearrangements without first securing a license from the Board. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any person who offers to sell or sells a casket, to be furnished or delivered at a time determinable by the death of the person whose body is to be disposed of in the casket, shall first comply with the provisions of this Article. There shall be two types of licenses: a preneed funeral establishment license and a preneed sales license. Only funeral establishments holding a valid establishment permit pursuant to G.S. 90-210.25(d) shall be eligible for a preneed funeral establishment license. Employees and agents of such entities, upon meeting the qualifications to engage in preneed funeral planning as established by the Board, shall be eligible for a preneed sales license. The Board shall establish the preneed funeral planning activities that are permitted under a preneed sales license. The Board shall adopt rules establishing such qualifications and activities no later than 12 months following the ratification of this act [Session Laws 1991 (Reg. Sess., 1992), c. 901, s. 2]. Preneed A preneed sales licensees licensee may sell preneed funeral contracts, prearrangement insurance policies, and make funded funeral prearrangements only on behalf of one preneed funeral establishment licensee; provided, however, they may sell preneed funeral contracts, prearrangement insurance policies, and make funeral prearrangements for any number of licensed preneed funeral establishments that are wholly owned by or affiliated with, through common ownership or contract, the same entity; provided further; the preneed sales licensee may also sell preneed funeral contracts or preneed insurance policies at any preneed establishment owned by the same corporation or at two or more preneed establishments owned by different individuals, corporations, or business entities located within a 30-mile radius. The preneed sales licensee shall obtain a preneed sales license at each preneed funeral establishment at which the licensee sells preneed funeral contracts or preneed insurance policies or makes funded funeral arrangements. However, in the event they engagethe preneed sales licensee engages in selling prearrangement insurance policies, theythe licensee shall meet the licensing requirements of the Commissioner of Insurance. Every preneed funeral contract shall be signed by a person licensed as a funeral director or funeral service licensee pursuant to Article 13A of Chapter 90 of the General Statutes.

Application for a license shall be in writing, signed by the applicant and duly verified on forms furnished by the Board. Each application shall contain at least the following: the full names and addresses (both residence and place of business) of the applicant, and every partner, member, officer and director thereof if the applicant is a partnership, limited liability company, association, or corporation and any other information as the Board shall deem necessary. A preneed funeral establishment license shall be valid only at the address stated in the application or at a new address approved by the Board.

(b)        An application for a preneed funeral establishment license shall be accompanied by a nonrefundable application fee of not more than four hundred dollars ($400.00). The Board shall set the amounts of the application fees and renewal fees, by rule. A funeral establishment receiving a new preneed establishment license after January 1, 2008, or whose preneed establishment license has lapsed or was terminated for any reason after January 1, 2008, shall obtain a surety bond in an amount not less than fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) for five years, or upon demonstrating that it is solvent, no less than one year from the date the original license is issued. The Board may extend the bonding requirement in the event there is a claim paid from the bond.

If the license is granted, the application fee shall be applied to the annual license fee for the first year or part thereof. Upon receipt of the application and payment of the application fee, the Board shall issue a renewable preneed funeral establishment license unless it determines that the applicant has violated any provision of G.S. 90-210.69(c) or has made false statements or representations in the application, or is insolvent, or has conducted or is about to conduct, its business in a fraudulent manner, or is not duly authorized to transact business in this State. The license shall expire on December 31 and each preneed funeral establishment licensee shall pay annually to the Board on or before that date a license renewal fee of not more than two hundred fifty dollars ($250.00). On or before the first day of February immediately following expiration, a license may be renewed without paying a late fee. After that date,On or after January 1, a license may be renewed by paying a late fee of not more than one hundred dollars ($100.00) in addition to the annual renewal fee.

A funeral establishment receiving a new preneed establishment license after January 1, 2008, or whose preneed establishment license has lapsed or was terminated for any reason after January 1, 2008, other than for failure to timely renew the license, shall obtain a surety bond in an amount not less than fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) for five years, or upon demonstrating that the establishment is solvent, not less than one year from the date the original license is issued. The funeral establishment may purchase the bond from any company authorized by law to sell bonds in this State or deposit fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) with the clerk of superior court in the county where the preneed funeral establishment maintains its facility that is licensed or applying to be licensed by the Board. The Board may extend the bonding requirement in the event there is a claim paid from the bond.

(c)        An application for a preneed sales license shall be accompanied by a nonrefundable application fee of not more than fifty dollars ($50.00). The Board shall set the amounts of the application fees and renewal fees by rule, but the fees shall not exceed fifty dollars ($50.00). If the license is granted, the application fee shall be applied to the annual license fee for the first year or part thereof. Upon receipt of the application and payment of the application fee, the Board shall issue a renewable preneed sales license provided the applicant has met the qualifications to engage in preneed funeral planning as established by the Board unless it determines that the applicant has violated any provision of G.S. 90-210.69(c). The license shall expire on December 31 and each preneed sales licensee shall pay annually to the Board on or before that date a license renewal fee of not more than fifty dollars ($50.00). On or before the first day of February, a license may be renewed without paying a late fee. After that date,On or after January 1, a license may be renewed by paying a late fee of not more than twenty-five dollars ($25.00) in addition to the annual renewal fee.

(d)        Any person selling a preneed funeral contract, whether funded by a trust deposit or a prearrangement insurance policy, shall remit to the Board, within 10 days of the sale, a fee not to exceed twenty dollars ($20.00) for each sale and a copy of each contract. The person shall pay a late fee of not more than twenty-five dollars ($25.00) for each late filing and payment. The fees shall not be remitted in cash.

(d1)      The Board may also set and collect a fee of not more than twenty-five dollars ($25.00) for the late filing of a certificate of performance and a fee of not more than one hundred and fifty dollars ($150.00) for the late filing of an annual report.

(e),       (f). Repealed by Session Laws 2003-420, s. 14, effective October 1, 2003."

SECTION 12.  G.S. 90-210.68 reads as rewritten:

"(a)       Every preneed licensee shall keep for examination by the Board accurate accounts, books, and records in this State of all preneed funeral contract and prearrangement insurance policy transactions, copies of all agreements, insurance policies, instruments of assignment, the dates and amounts of payments made and accepted thereon, the names and addresses of the contracting parties, the persons for whose benefit funds are accepted, and the names of the financial institutions holding preneed funeral trust funds and insurance companies issuing prearrangement insurance policies. The Board, its inspectors appointed pursuant to G.S. 90-210.24 and its examiners, which the Board may appoint to assist in the enforcement of this Article, may during normal hours of operation and periods shortly before or after normal hours of operation, investigate the books, records, and accounts of any licensee under this Article with respect to trust funds, preneed funeral contracts, and prearrangement insurance policies. Any preneed licensee who, upon inspection, fails to meet the requirements of this subsection or who fails to keep an appointment for an inspection shall pay a reinspection fee to the Board in an amount not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100.00).based on the actual cost of the reinspection after considering the salary of any employees involved and any expenses incurred during the reinspection. The Board may require the attendance of and examine under oath all persons whose testimony it may require. Every preneed licensee shall submit a written report to the Board, at least annually, in a manner and with such content as established by the Board, of its preneed funeral contract sales and performance of such contracts. The Board may also require other reports.

(a2)      Beginning in January 2015, and in January of each year thereafter, each preneed licensee shall prepare and submit an annual report on its preneed funeral contract sales and performance of preneed funeral contracts and submit the report to the Board in the manner and form prescribed by the Board.

."

SECTION 13.  G.S. 90-210.69(c) reads as rewritten:

"(c)       In accordance with the provisions of Chapter 150B of the General Statutes, if the Board finds that a licensee, an applicant for a license or an applicant for license renewal is guilty of one or more of the following, the Board may refuse to issue or renew a license or may suspend or revoke a license or place the holder thereof on probation upon conditions set by the Board, with revocation upon failure to comply with the conditions:

(1)        Offering to engage or engaging in activities for which a license is required under this Article but without having obtained such a license.

(2)        Aiding or abetting an unlicensed person, firm, partnership, association, corporation or other entity to offer to engage or engage in such activities.

(3)        A crime involving fraud or moral turpitude by conviction thereof.

(4)        Fraud or misrepresentation in obtaining or receiving a license or in preneed funeral planning.

(5)        False or misleading advertising.

(6)        Violating or cooperating with others to violate any provision of this Article, the rules and regulations of the Board, or the standards set forth in Funeral Industry Practices, 16 C.F.R. 453 (1984), as amended from time to time.

(7)        Denial, suspension, or revocation of an occupational or business license by another jurisdiction.

In any case in which the Board is authorized to take any of the actions permitted under this subsection, the Board may instead accept an offer in compromise of the charges whereby the accused shall pay to the Board a penalty of not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000). In any case in which the Board is entitled to place a licensee on a term of probation, the Board may also impose a penalty of not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000) in conjunction with such probation. The Board may determine the length and conditions of any period of probation, revocation, suspension, or refusal to issue or renew a license."

SECTION 14.  G.S. 90-210.73 reads as rewritten:

" 90-210.73.  Not public record.

The following records or documents shall not be subject to the provisions of Chapter 132 of the General Statutes:

(1)        The names and addresses of the purchasers and beneficiaries of preneed funeral contracts filed with the Board shall not be subject to Chapter 132 of the General Statutes.Board.

(2)        All financial information used to demonstrate solvency in connection with a bond required under G.S. 90-210.67."

SECTION 15.  G.S. 90-210.80 through G.S. 90-210.107 are repealed.

SECTION 16.  G.S. 90-210.81 reads as rewritten:

" 90-210.81.  Requirements as to rules and bylaws.

All burial associations now operating within the State of North Carolina shall have and maintain rules and bylaws embodying the following:

Article 4. The annual meeting of the association shall be held at ____ (here insert the place, date and hour); each member shall have one vote at said annual meeting and 15 members of the association shall constitute a quorum. There shall be elected at the annual meeting of said association a board of directors of seven members, each of whom shall serve for a period of from one to five years as the membership may determine and until his or her successor shall have been elected and qualified. Any member of the board of directors who shall fail to maintain his or her membership, as provided in the rules and bylaws of said association, shall cease to be a member of the board of directors and a director shall be appointed by the president of said association for the unexpired term of such disqualified member. There shall be at least an annual meeting of the board of directors, and such meeting shall be held immediately following the annual meeting of the membership of the association. The directors of the association may, by a majority vote, hold other meetings of which notice shall be given to each member by mailing such notice five days before the meeting to be held. At the annual meetings of the directors of the association, the board of directors shall elect a president, a vice-president, and a secretary-treasurer. The president and vice-president shall be elected from among the directors, but the secretary-treasurer may be selected from the director membership or from the membership of the association, it being provided that it is not necessary that the secretary-treasurer shall be a member of the board of directors. Among other duties that the secretary-treasurer may perform, he shall be chargeable with keeping an accurate and faithful roll of the membership of this association at all times and he shall be chargeable with the duty of faithfully preserving and faithfully applying all moneys coming into his hands by virtue of his said office. The president, vice-president and secretary-treasurer shall constitute a board of control who shall direct the affairs of the association in accordance with these Articles and bylaws of the association, and subject to such modification as may be made or authorized by an act of the General Assembly. The secretary-treasurer shall keep a record of all assessments made, dues collected and benefits paid. The books of the association, together with all records and bank accounts shall be at all times open to the inspection of the Board of Funeral Service or its duly constituted auditors or representatives. It shall be the duty of the secretary or secretary-treasurer of each association to keep the books of the association posted up-to-date so that the financial standing of the association may be readily ascertained by the Board of Funeral Service or any auditor or representative employed by it. Upon the failure of any secretary or secretary-treasurer to comply with this provision, it shall be the duty of the Board of Funeral Service to take charge of the books of the association and do whatever work is necessary to bring the books up-to-date. The actual costs of said work may be charged the burial association and shall be paid from the thirty percent (30%) allowed by law for the operation of the burial association.

Whenever in the opinion of the Board of Funeral Service, it is necessary to audit the books of any burial association more than once in any calendar year, the Board of Funeral Service shall have authority to assess such burial association the actual cost of any audit in excess of one per calendar year, provided that no more than one audit may be deemed necessary unless a discrepancy exists at the last regular audit. Such cost shall be paid from the thirty percent (30%) allowed by law for the operation of the burial association.

Every burial association shall file with the Board of Funeral Service an annual report of its financial condition on a form furnished to it by the Board of Funeral Service. Such report shall be filed on or before February 15 of each calendar year and shall cover the complete financial condition of the burial association for the immediate preceding calendar year. The Board of Funeral Service shall levy and collect a penalty of twenty-five dollars ($25.00) for each day after February 15 that the report called for herein is not filed. The Board may, in its discretion, grant any reasonable extension of the above filing date without the penalty provided in this section. Such penalty shall be paid from the thirty percent (30%) allowed by law for the operation of the burial association. Any secretary or secretary-treasurer who fails to file such financial report on or before February 15 of each calendar year or on or before the last day of any period of extension for the filing of such report granted by the Board to the burial association of such secretary or secretary-treasurer shall be guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor. Each day after February 15, or the last day of any period of extension for the filing of the report granted by the Board to the burial association of such secretary or secretary-treasurer, that said report is not filed by the secretary or secretary-treasurer of a burial association, shall constitute a separate offense.

."

SECTION 17.  Article 13E of Chapter 90 of the General Statutes is amended by adding the following new section to read:

" 90-210.108.  Burial associations regulated as insurance companies.

On or after January 1, 2015, no person or corporation shall own or operate a burial association unless the burial association complies with all requirements imposed on an insurance company or insurer, as such terms are defined under G.S. 58-1-5(3). For purposes of this section, the term "burial association" means all corporations or business entities licensed or regulated by the North Carolina Board of Funeral Service that operate a burial association before January 1, 2015. Any person or corporation violating this section shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor."

SECTION 18.  G.S. 90-210.123 reads as rewritten:

" 90-210.123.  Licensing and inspection.

(a)        Any person doing business in this State, or any cemetery, funeral establishment, corporation, partnership, joint venture, voluntary organization, or any other entity may erect, maintain, and operate a crematory in this State and may provide the necessary employees, facilities, structure, and equipment for the cremation of human remains, provided that the person or entity has secured a license as a crematory licensee in accordance with this Article. The owner of a cremation facility shall be a licensed funeral director or funeral service licensee.

(b)        A crematory may be constructed on or adjacent to any cemetery, on or adjacent to any funeral establishment that is zoned commercial or industrial, or at any other location consistent with local zoning and environmental regulations.

(c)        Application for a license as a crematory licensee shall be made on forms furnished and prescribed by the Board. The Board shall inspect the premises, facilities, structure, and equipment to be used as a crematory, confirm that the crematory manager's and crematory technician's educational certificate is valid, and issue a renewable license to the crematory licensee if the applicant meets all the requirements and standards of the Board and the requirements of this Article.

(d)        Every application for licensure shall identify the crematory manager and specify his or her funeral directing or funeral service license number, and all crematory technicians employed by the crematory licensee providing that nothing in this Article shall prohibit the designation and identification by the crematory licensee of one individual to serve as a crematory manager and crematory technician. Each crematory licensed in North Carolina shall employ on a full-time basis at least one crematory technician. Every application for licensure and renewal thereof shall include all crematory technicians' educational certificates. The crematory licensee shall keep the Board informed at all times of the names and addresses of the crematory manager and all crematory technicians. In the event a licensee is in the process of replacing its only crematory technician at the time of license renewal, the licensee may continue to operate the crematory for a reasonable time period not to exceed 180 days.

(e)        All licenses and permits shall expire on the last day of December of each year. A On or after January 1, a license or permit may be renewed without paying a late fee on or before the first day of February immediately following expiration. After that date, a license or permit may be renewed by paying a late fee as provided in G.S. 90-210.132 in addition to the annual renewal fee. Licenses and permits that remain expired six months or more require a new application for renewal. Licenses and permits are not transferable. A new application for a license or permit shall be made to the Board within 30 days following a change of ownership of more than fifty percent (50%) of the business.

(f)         No person, cemetery, funeral establishment, corporation, partnership, joint venture, voluntary organization, or any other entity shall cremate any human remains, except in a crematory licensed for this express purpose and operated by a crematory licensee subject to the restrictions and limitations of this Article or unless otherwise permitted by statute.

(g)        Whenever the Board finds that an owner, partner, crematory manager, member, officer, or any crematory technician of a crematory licensee or any applicant to become a crematory licensee, or that any authorized employee, agent, or representative has violated any provision of this Article, or is guilty of any of the following acts, and when the Board also finds that the crematory operator or applicant has thereby become unfit to practice, the Board may suspend, revoke, or refuse to issue or renew the license, in accordance with Chapter 150B of the General Statutes:

(1)        Conviction of a felony or a crime involving fraud or moral turpitude.

(1a)      Denial, suspension, or revocation of an occupational or business license by another jurisdiction.

(2)        Fraud or misrepresentation in obtaining or renewing a license or in the practice of cremation.

(3)        False or misleading advertising.

(4)        Solicitation of dead human bodies by the licensee, his agents, assistants, or employees; but this subdivision shall not be construed to prohibit general advertising by the licensee.

(5)        Employment directly or indirectly of any agent, assistant, or other person on a part-time or full-time basis or on commission for the purpose of calling upon individuals or institutions by whose influence dead human bodies may be turned over to a particular licensee.

(6)        The direct or indirect payment or offer of payment of a commission by the licensee or the licensee's agent, assistant, or employees for the purpose of securing business.

(7)        Gross immorality, including being under the influence of alcohol or drugs while performing cremation services.

(8)        Aiding or abetting an unlicensed person to perform services under this Article, including the use of a picture or name in connection with advertisements or other written material published or caused to be published by the licensee.

(9)        Failing to treat a dead human body with respect at all times.

(10)      Violating or cooperating with others to violate any of the provisions of this Article or of the rules of the Board.Board or violation of Funeral Industry Practices, 16 C.F.R. Part 453 (1984), pursuant to its most recent version.

(11)      Violation of any State law or municipal or county ordinance or regulation affecting the handling, custody, care, or transportation of dead human bodies.

(12)      Refusing to surrender promptly the custody of a dead human body or cremated remains upon the express order of the person lawfully entitled to the custody thereof, except as provided in G.S. 90-210.131(e).

(13)      Indecent exposure or exhibition of a dead human body while in the custody or control of a licensee.

(14)      Practicing funeral directing, embalming, or funeral service without a license.

In any case in which the Board is authorized to take any of the actions permitted under this subsection, the Board may instead accept an offer in compromise of the charges whereby the accused shall pay to the Board a penalty of not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000).

(h)        Where the Board finds a licensee is guilty of one or more of the acts or omissions listed in subsection (g) of this section but it is determined by the Board that the licensee has not thereby become unfit to practice, the Board may place the licensee on a term of probation in accordance with the procedures set out in Chapter 150B of the General Statutes. In any case in which the Board is entitled to place a licensee on a term of probation, the Board may also impose a penalty of not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000) in conjunction with the probation. The Board may determine the length and conditions of any period of probation, suspension, revocation, or refusal to issue or renew a license.

(i)         The Board may hold hearings in accordance with the provisions of this Article and Article 3A of Chapter 150B of the General Statutes. The Board shall conduct any such hearing. The Board shall constitute an "agency" under Article 3A of Chapter 150B of the General Statutes with respect to proceedings initiated pursuant to this Article. The Board is empowered to regulate and inspect crematories and crematory licensees and to enforce as provided by law the provisions of this Article and the rules adopted hereunder. Any crematory that, upon inspection, is found not to meet any of the requirements of this Article shall pay a reinspection fee to the Board for each additional inspection that is made to ascertain whether the deficiency or other violation has been corrected.corrected after considering the salary of any employees involved and any expenses incurred during the reinspection. The Board may obtain preliminary and final injunctions whenever a violation of this Article has occurred or threatens to occur.

In addition to the powers enumerated in Chapter 150B of the General Statutes, the Board shall have the power to administer oaths and issue subpoenas requiring the attendance of persons and the production of papers and records before the Board in any hearing, investigation, or proceeding conducted by it. Members of the Board's staffInspectors of the Board authorized by G.S. 90-210.24 or the sheriff or other appropriate official of any county of this State shall serve all notices, subpoenas, and other papers given to them by the President of the Board for service in the same manner as process issued by any court of record. Any person who neglects or refuses to obey a subpoena issued by the Board shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

(j)         Any crematory that, upon inspection, is found not to meet any of the requirements of this Article shall pay a reinspection fee to the Board for each additional inspection that is made to ascertain whether the deficiency or other violation has been corrected, taking into consideration the salary of any employees involved and any expenses incurred during the reinspection, but in no event shall the reinspection fee exceed three hundred dollars ($300.00) per reinspection."

SECTION 19.  G.S. 90-210.123 is amended by adding the following new subsection to read:

"(f1)           A crematory shall sell or offer to sell only cremation services, including the making of preneed cremation arrangements under G.S. 90-210.126, or sell or offer to sell initial containers, urns, and other cremation merchandise through a person licensed by the Board to practice funeral directing or funeral service who is an owner, employee, or agent of the crematory."

SECTION 20.  G.S. 90-210.124(b) reads as rewritten:

"(b)      A person who does not exercise his or her right to dispose of the decedent's body under subdivision (a)(2) of this section within five days of notification or 10 days from date of death, whichever is earlier, shall be deemed to have waived his or her right to authorize disposition of the decedent's body or to contest disposition in accordance with this section. Pursuant to G.S. 130A-415(c) or (j), upon such a waiver, and upon the Commissioner of Anatomy declining or failing to request delivery of the dead body, the director of social services, having the duty to dispose of the human remains, shall become vested with all interests and rights to the dead body and shall authorize and arrange for disposition, including cremation."

SECTION 21.  G.S. 90-210.129 reads as rewritten:

"(a)       In deathsFor any death occurring in North Carolina certified by the attending physician or other person authorized by law to sign a death certificate under the supervision of a physician, the body shall not be cremated before the crematory licensee receives a death certificate signed by the attending physician, person authorized to sign the death certificate, which shall contain at a minimum the following information:

(1)        Decedent's name;

(2)        Date of death;

(3)        Date of birth;

(4)        Sex;

(5)        Place of death;

(6)        Facility name (if not institution, give street and number);

(7)        County of death;

(8)        City of death; and

(9)        Time of death (if known)

(c1)      For any death occurring outside North Carolina, a crematory licensee shall not cremate a dead human body without first obtaining a copy of a burial-transit permit issued by the jurisdiction where the death occurred and one of the following documents:

(1)        A death certificate from the other jurisdiction that meets the same content and signature requirements of subsection (a) of this section.

(2)        Any document or certificate required to authorize cremation in the jurisdiction where the death occurred that is signed by a physician, medical examiner, or other authorized person and contains all information required by subsections (a)(1) through (a)(9) of this section.

The provisions of this subsection shall not be construed to waive the jurisdiction of the medical examiner.

(h)        The simultaneous cremation of the human remains of more than one person within the same cremation chamber is forbidden.forbidden, provided that the following human remains may be cremated simultaneously upon the express written direction of the authorized agent: (i) the human remains of multiple fetuses from the same mother and the same birth and (ii) the human remains of triplets up to the age of one year old from the same mother and the same birth.

."

SECTION 22.  G.S. 90-210.132(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       The Board may set and collect fees by rule not to exceed the following amounts from crematory and hydrolysis licensees, crematory and hydrolysis manager permit holders, and applicants:

(1)..... Licensee application fee. .................................................... $400.00

(2)..... Annual renewal fee. ............................................................. 150.00

(3)..... Late renewal fee. ................................................................... 75.00

(4)..... Reinspection fee. ................................................................. 100.00

(5)..... Per cremation or hydrolysis fee. ............................................. 10.00

(6)..... Late fee, per cremation.cremation or hydrolysis. ..................... 10.00

(7)..... Late fee, cremation or hydrolysis report. ................................ 75.00 per month

(8)..... Crematory or hydrolysis manager

permit application fee. ................................................... 150.00

(9)..... Annual crematory or hydrolysis manager

permit renewal fee. .......................................................... 40.00."

SECTION 23.  G.S. 90-210.133(c) reads as rewritten:

"(c)       Nothing in this Article shall prohibit or require the performance of cremations by crematory licensees or crematory managers for or directly with the public or exclusively for or through licensed funeral directors.directors, except as provided in G.S. 90-210.123(f1)."

SECTION 24.  Article 13F of Chapter 90 of the General Statutes is amended by adding the following new section to read:

" 90-210.136.  Hydrolysis of human remains.

(a)        The following definitions shall apply in this section:

(1)        Hydrolysis or hydrolyze. - The technical process using water and other chemicals to destroy, dissolve, or reduce human remains to simpler or essential elements.

(2)        Hydrolysis container. - A container other than a casket designed to enclose human remains and made of suitable material to be easily destroyed during hydrolysis and to resist spillage and leakage. A hydrolysis container may be a cremation container or any other container that meets the requirements of this subsection.

(3)        Hydrolysis licensee. - The person or entity licensed to hydrolyze human remains and perform hydrolysis.

(4)        Liquid waste. - Any liquid remaining after hydrolysis that does not contain any trace elements of human tissue.

(b)        No person, cemetery, funeral establishment, corporation, partnership, joint venture, voluntary organization, or other entity shall hydrolyze human remains without first obtaining a license from the Board.

(c)        Except as otherwise provided by this section, a license for the hydrolysis of human remains shall have the same requirements and fees under this Article as for the licensing of crematories. The hydrolysis of human remains shall be conducted in compliance with all requirements for cremation, and the licensee shall pay the same fees for monthly reports for each hydrolysis as crematories under this Article.

(d)        The Board shall have the same powers to regulate, enforce, discipline, and inspect hydrolysis licensees and the practice of hydrolysis that have been granted under this Article for the regulation, enforcement, discipline, and inspection of crematories and the practice of cremation.

(e)        Any solid remains or residue remaining after hydrolysis shall be treated and disposed of as cremated remains under this Article. Disposal of liquid waste shall be subject to all applicable health and environmental laws and regulations.

(f)         Human remains shall be hydrolyzed in a hydrolysis container and shall not be required to be hydrolyzed in a casket.

(g)        Unless specified otherwise by the manufacturer of the equipment used for hydrolysis, human remains may be hydrolyzed without first removing a pacemaker or other material or implant that would be potentially hazardous if cremated."

SECTION 25.  G.S. 130A-415 reads as rewritten:

" 130A-415.  Unclaimed bodies; bodies claimed by the Lifeguardianship Council of the Association for Retarded Citizens of North Carolina; disposition.

(a)        Any person, other than a person licensed as a funeral director or funeral service licensee in this State, including officers, employees and agents of the State or of any unit of local government in the State, undertakers doing business within the State, hospitals, nursing homes or other institutions, having physical possession of a dead body shall make reasonable efforts to contact relatives of the deceased or other persons who may wish to claim the body for final disposition. If the body remains unclaimed for final disposition for 10 days,disposition, the person having possession shall notify the Commission of Anatomy. Upon request of the Commission of Anatomy, the person having possession shall deliver the dead body to the Commission of Anatomy at a time and place specified by the Commission of Anatomy or shall permit the Commission of Anatomy to take and remove the body.

(a1)      A dead body shall be deemed unclaimed if either of the following conditions apply:

(1)        No person notifies the person in possession of the dead body within 10 days from the date of death that he or she wishes to dispose of the dead body.

(2)        All persons who have expressed interest in arranging for disposition of the dead body have ceased communicating with the person in possession of the dead body for five days, at least 10 days have passed from the date of death, and the person in possession of the dead body has used reasonable efforts to contact all persons interested in arranging for final disposition.

(b)        Unless the provisions of subsection (j) of this section apply, all All dead bodies not claimed for final disposition within 10 days of the decedent's death may be received and delivered by the Commission of Anatomy pursuant to the authority contained in G.S. 130A-33.30 and this Part and in accordance with the rules of the Commission of Anatomy. Upon receipt of a body by the Commission of Anatomy all interests in and rights to the unclaimed dead body shall vest in the Commission of Anatomy. The recipient to which the Commission of Anatomy delivers the body shall pay all expenses for the embalming and delivery of the body, and for the reasonable expenses arising from efforts to notify relatives or others.

(b1)      The 10-day period periods referenced in subsections (a) and (b)subdivisions (1) and (2) of subsection (a1) of this section may be shortened by the county director of social services upon determination that a dead body will not be claimed for final disposition within the 10-day period.

(c)        Unless the provisions of subsection (j) of this section apply, if Should the Commission of Anatomy decline declines to receive a dead body, the person with possession shall inform the director of social services of the county in which the body is located. that is responsible for the expense of the final disposition of the decedent. Upon notification, all interests in and rights to the abandoned dead body shall vest in The the director of social services of that county county, who then shall arrange for prompt final disposition of the body, either by cremation cremation, hydrolysis, or burial. Reasonable costs of disposition and of efforts made to notify relatives and others shall be considered funeral expenses and shall be paid in accordance with G.S. 28A-19-6 and G.S. 28A-19-8. If those expenses cannot be satisfied from the decedent's estate, they shall be borne by the decedent's county of residence. If the deceased is not a resident of this State, or if the county of residence is unknown, those expenses shall be borne by the county in which the death occurred.occurred or, if the county of residence and death of the decedent are unknown, the county where the deceased was located.

(c1)      Reasonable costs of disposition and of efforts made to notify relatives and others shall be considered funeral expenses and shall be paid in accordance with G.S. 28A-19-6 and G.S. 28A-19-8. If those expenses cannot be satisfied from the decedent's estate, they shall be borne by the decedent's county of residence. If the deceased is not a resident of this State, or if the county of residence is unknown, those expenses shall be borne by the county in which the death occurred.

(d)        No autopsy shall be performed on an unclaimed body without the written consent of the Commission of Anatomy except that written consent is not required for an autopsy performed pursuant to Part 2 of this Article.

(e)        Due caution shall be taken to shield the unclaimed body from public view.

(f)         Notwithstanding anything contained in this section, an unclaimed body shall not mean a dead body for which the deceased has made a gift pursuant to Part 3A of this Article.

(g)        Nothing in this Part shall require the officers, employees or agents of a county to notify the Commission of Anatomy regarding the bodies of minors who were in the custody of the county at the time of death and whose final disposition will be arranged by the county. In the absence of notification, the expenses of the final disposition shall be a charge upon the county having custody.

(h)        The provisions of this Part shall not apply to bodies within the jurisdiction of the medical examiner under G.S. 130A-383 or 130A-384.

(i)         In addition to the other duties of the Commission of Anatomy, when the Commission of Anatomy is notified by the Lifeguardianship Council of the Association of Retarded Citizens of North Carolina, Inc., that the Council intends to claim a body, the Commission shall release the body to the Council. The Lifeguardianship Council shall notify the Commission of Anatomy within 24 hours after death of its intent to claim a body for burial or other humane and caring disposition.

(j)         Any funeral director or funeral service licensee doing business within the State having physical possession of a dead body shall make reasonable efforts to contact relatives of the deceased or other persons who may wish to claim the body for final disposition. If the body remains unclaimed for final disposition for 10 days, or if the right to authorize the type, method, place, and disposition of the dead body is waived under G.S. 130A-420(b1) or G.S. 90-210.24(b), and if all persons who have expressed interest in arranging for the disposition of the dead body have ceased communication with the person in possession of the dead body for five days, the dead body shall be deemed abandoned. If the funeral director or funeral service licensee receives the dead body from a person or entity listed in subsection (a) of this section, the 10-day period shall run concurrently with any period imposed on such person. Any person having possession of an abandoned dead body shall notify the Commission of Anatomy. Upon request of the Commission of Anatomy, the person having possession of the abandoned dead body shall deliver the abandoned dead body to the Commission of Anatomy at a time and place specified by the Commission of Anatomy or shall permit the Commission of Anatomy to take and remove the abandoned dead body. If the Commission of Anatomy fails to request delivery of the abandoned dead body within two days of receipt of such notification required by this subsection, or if the Commission of Anatomy declines delivery of the abandoned dead body, the funeral director shall notify the director of social services of the county in which the abandoned dead body is located of such circumstances, and shall submit a sworn statement to the director verifying that the body is an abandoned dead body, that the funeral director has made reasonable efforts to inform relatives and others of the death, and that the Commission of Anatomy has failed to request delivery of the abandoned dead body. Upon receipt of the sworn statement, the director of social services shall arrange for final disposition of the abandoned dead body and all interests in and rights to the abandoned dead body shall vest in the director of social services, who shall then arrange for prompt final disposition of the abandoned dead body, either by cremation, hydrolysis, or burial. Upon payment by the director of social services for final disposition of the abandoned dead body, the director shall have a claim for reasonable funeral expenses which shall be paid in accordance with G.S. 28A-19-6 and G.S. 28A-19-8. If those expenses cannot be satisfied from the decedent's estate, they shall be borne by the decedent's county of residence. If the decedent is not a resident of this State, or if the county of residence is unknown, those expenses shall be borne by the county in which the death occurred, or if the county of residence and death of the decedent is unknown, the county where the deceased was located."

SECTION 26.  G.S. 130A-420 is amended by adding the following new subsections to read:

(a2)      Unless expressly prohibited by the order of appointment, a guardian of the person shall have the authority to direct the final disposition of the remains of the ward through the methods authorized in subdivision (1) of subsection (a) of this section if executed before the death of the ward.

(b1)      A person who does not exercise his or her right to dispose of the decedent's body under subsection (b) of this section within five days of notification or 10 days from the date of death, whichever is earlier, shall be deemed to have waived his or her right to authorize disposition of the decedent's body or contest disposition in accordance with this section. Under G.S. 130A-415(c) or (j), upon such a waiver, and upon the Commission of Anatomy declining or failing to request delivery of the dead body, the director of social services of the county in which the dead body is located shall become vested with all interests and rights to the dead body and shall authorize and arrange for disposition by cremation, hydrolysis, or burial.

(b2)      Once the burial of an individual is completed under the provisions of this section, the method and location of disposition shall not be changed unless otherwise authorized by law or by a court order upon a showing of good cause."

SECTION 27.  If any provision of this act or its application is held invalid, the invalidity does not affect other provisions or applications of this act that can be given effect without the invalid provisions or application, and to this end the provisions of this act are severable.

SECTION 28.  This act becomes effective December 1, 2013.