Bill Summary for H 554 (2019-2020)

Summary date: 

Apr 3 2019

Bill Information:

View NCGA Bill Details2019-2020 Session
House Bill 554 (Public) Filed Tuesday, April 2, 2019
Intro. by Boles, Alexander, Hunter, Jones.

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Bill summary

Amends GS 90-210.25, regarding funeral service licensing. Amends the requirements to be licensed for the practice of funeral directing to require possession of a degree in mortuary science or graduation from a Funeral Director Program, or the equivalent, from a program approved by the NC Funeral Service Board (Board) or (was, and) accredited by the American Board of Funeral Services Education, and to require a passing score on the entry-level examination in funeral directing within the last three years (previously specified administration of the exam by the International Conference of Funeral Service Examining Boards). Makes a similar change to the requirements to be licensed for the practice of funeral service to require a passing score on the subject of entry-level examination in funeral directing within the last three years (previously specified administration of the exam by the International Conference of Funeral Service Examining Boards). Adds that a funeral service exam taken or passed on or before October 1, 2018, for the purposes of attaining licensure under the statute, is valid for a five-year period following the date on which the applicant passed the examination. Amends the specifications concerning resident trainees to provide that a 12-month resident traineeship that is completed on or before October 1, 2018, is recognized as a qualifying traineeship for licensure under the statute for a five-year period following the completion date of the traineeship.

Amends GS 90-210.63, regarding substitution of a preneed licensee in a preneed funeral contract. Adds a new requirement for any licensee holding a permit under Article 13A (Practice of Funeral Service) or Article 13F (Cremations) that accepts the transfer of a preneed funeral contract after the death of the preneed contract beneficiary, to require the licensee to file the certificate of performance with the Board and mail a copy to the contracting preneed licensee. If performed in another state, requires the original contracting preneed licensee to make reasonable efforts to obtain the information needed to accurately complete the certificate of performance and file the certificate pursuant to the time allowed under GS 90-210.64 (within 30 days).

Amends GS 90-210.23 to require crematory licensees that offer at-need cremation goods and services to the public to comply with the standards of the federal Funeral Industry Practices Act, as identified and amended. Amends GS 90-210.123 to authorize the Board to enforce compliance with the standards of the Funeral Industry Practices Act. 

Amends GS 90-210.129, regarding cremation procedures. Modifies subsection (c1) to now prohibits a crematory licensee from cremating a dead human body of which the death occurred outside the State without first obtaining a copy of the burial-transit or disposal permit issued under the law of the state, province, or foreign government in which death or disinterment occurred (previously required the burial-transit permit to be issued by the jurisdiction where the death occurred and  also required another document meeting specified requirements; also did not include the option to cremate upon obtaining a disposal permit issued under the law of the government in which disinterment occurred). Specifies that subsection (c1) does not waive the requirements of subsection (b), which requires receipt of a cremation authorization form signed by the medical examiner prior to cremation if so required under GS 130A-388 or rules adopted thereunder.

Amends GS 210-129(d), to specify that the funeral director, funeral service licensee, or the crematory licensee (previously funeral service licensee not included) informed by an authorizing agent on the cremation authorization form of the presence of a pacemaker, defibrillator, or other potentially hazardous implant or condition in the human remains is responsible for ensuring that all necessary steps have been taken to remove the implant or correct the hazardous condition before delivering the human remains to the crematory. Clarifies that the responsibility lies with the licensee applicable or responsible for obtaining the information required to complete the decedent's death certificate. Requires anyone removing a hazardous implanted device or material to comply with the laws and rules governing the handling of such material and with any other regulations enforced by the proper regulating authority.

Amends GS 90-210.136(g), concerning hydrolyzing human remains, to require potentially hazardous implanted devices or materials in human remains other than a pacemaker or defibrillator to be handled in accordance with GS 90-210.129(d), as amended.

Makes conforming and clarifying additions to GS 130A-113 (Permits for burial-transit, authorization for cremation and disinterment-reinterment).

Amends GS 130A-385 to require the medical examiner to sign the death certificate within five days of receiving paperwork from a funeral home if a physician has not signed the death certificate. Permits the medical examiner to list the cause of death as undetermined if the decedent had not seen a physician within three month preceding death. Permits such a certificate listing the cause of death as undetermined to be used for the purpose of cremation.

Applies to cremations and licenses granted on or after October 1, 2019.

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