1 SB306
2 209180-1
3 By Senator Figures
4 RFD: Banking and Insurance
5 First Read: 04-MAR-21
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1 209180-1:n:03/01/2021:KMS**/cr LSA2020-2553
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8 SYNOPSIS: Under existing law, the Alabama Board of
9 Funeral Service licenses and regulates funeral
10 establishments, funeral directors, and embalmers.
11 This bill would establish the Alabama
12 Preneed Funeral and Cemetery Act of 2021, and would
13 transfer the regulation of preneed contracts
14 pursuant to the Preneed Funeral and Cemetery Act
15 from the Commissioner and the Department of
16 Insurance to the board.
17 This bill would also provide for the
18 licensing and regulation of cemetery authorities
19 and cemeteries by the board.
20 Amendment 621 of the Constitution of Alabama
21 of 1901, now appearing as Section 111.05 of the
22 Official Recompilation of the Constitution of
23 Alabama of 1901, as amended, prohibits a general
24 law whose purpose or effect would be to require a
25 new or increased expenditure of local funds from
26 becoming effective with regard to a local
27 governmental entity without enactment by a 2/3 vote
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1 unless: it comes within one of a number of
2 specified exceptions; it is approved by the
3 affected entity; or the Legislature appropriates
4 funds, or provides a local source of revenue, to
5 the entity for the purpose.
6 The purpose or effect of this bill would be
7 to require a new or increased expenditure of local
8 funds within the meaning of the amendment. However,
9 the bill does not require approval of a local
10 governmental entity or enactment by a 2/3 vote to
11 become effective because it comes within one of the
12 specified exceptions contained in the amendment.
13
14 A BILL
15 TO BE ENTITLED
16 AN ACT
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18 Relating to the Alabama Board of Funeral Service; to
19 amend Sections 34-13-1, 34-13-2, 34-13-4, 34-13-7, 34-13-9,
20 34-13-11, 34-13-12, 34-13-20, 34-13-22, 34-13-23, 34-13-26,
21 34-13-27, 34-13-52, 34-13-53, 34-13-54, 34-13-55, 34-13-56,
22 34-13-56.1, 34-13-111, and 34-13-113, Code of Alabama 1975; to
23 add Article 5 to Chapter 13, Title 34, Code of Alabama 1975,
24 by amending and renumbering Sections 27-17A-1, 27-17A-3,
25 27-17A-4, 27-17A-10 to 27-17A-16, inclusive, 27-17A-18 to
26 27-17A-25, inclusive, 27-17A-30 to 27-17A-34, inclusive, and
27 27-17A-40 to 27-17A-44, inclusive, as Sections 34-13-170,
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1 34-13-172, 34-13-173, 34-13-190 to 34-13-197, inclusive,
2 34-13-199 to 34-13-206, inclusive, 34-13-230 to 34-13-234,
3 inclusive, 34-13-260 to 34-13-264, inclusive, Code of Alabama
4 1975, and adding Sections 34-13-171 and 34-13-198 to the Code
5 of Alabama 1975; to add Article 6 to Chapter 13, Title 34,
6 Code of Alabama 1975, by amending and renumbering Sections
7 27-17A-46 to 27-17A-56, inclusive, as Sections 34-13-295 to
8 34-13-302, inclusive, and Sections 34-13-310 and 34-13-311,
9 Code of Alabama 1975; and adding Sections 34-13-290 to
10 34-13-294, inclusive, 34-13-303 to 34-13-308, inclusive, and
11 34-13-312 to 34-13-315, inclusive, to the Code of Alabama
12 1975; to establish the Alabama Preneed Funeral and Cemetery
13 Act of 2021; to transfer the existing Preneed Funeral and
14 Cemetery Act, and the regulation of preneed contracts, from
15 the Commissioner and Department of Insurance to the Alabama
16 Board of Funeral Service; to provide for the licensing and
17 regulation of cemetery authorities and cemeteries by the
18 board; to make corresponding technical changes; and to repeal
19 Sections 27-17A-2, 27-17A-17, 27-17A-45, and Section
20 27-17A-57, Code of Alabama 1975, relating to definitions, the
21 dissolution or liquidation of a certificate holder, the
22 endowment care fund, and the jurisdiction of the Commissioner
23 of Insurance relating to preneed contracts, respectively; and
24 in connection therewith would have as its purpose or effect
25 the requirement of a new or increased expenditure of local
26 funds within the meaning of Amendment 621 of the Constitution
27 of Alabama of 1901, now appearing as Section 111.05 of the
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1 Official Recompilation of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901,
2 as amended.
3 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF ALABAMA:
4 Section 1. Sections 34-13-1, 34-13-2, 34-13-4,
5 34-13-7, 34-13-9, 34-13-11, 34-13-12, 34-13-20, 34-13-22,
6 34-13-23, 34-13-26, 34-13-27, 34-13-52, 34-13-53, 34-13-54,
7 34-13-55, 34-13-56, 34-13-56.1, 34-13-111, and 34-13-113, of
8 the Code of Alabama 1975, are amended to read as follows:
9 "34-13-1.
10 "(a) For purposes of this chapter, the following
11 terms shall have the following meanings:
12 "(1) ACCREDITED SCHOOL or COLLEGE OF MORTUARY
13 SCIENCE. A school or college approved by the Alabama Board of
14 Funeral Service and which maintains a course of instruction of
15 not less than 48 calendar weeks or four academic quarters or
16 college terms and which gives a course of instruction in the
17 fundamental subjects including, but not limited to, the
18 following:
19 "a. Mortuary management and administration.
20 "b. Legal medicine and toxicology as it pertains to
21 funeral directing.
22 "c. Public health, hygiene, and sanitary science.
23 "d. Mortuary science, to include embalming
24 technique, in all its aspects; chemistry of embalming, color
25 harmony; discoloration, its causes, effects, and treatment;
26 treatment of special cases; restorative art; funeral
27 management; and professional ethics.
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1 "e. Anatomy and physiology.
2 "f. Chemistry, organic and inorganic.
3 "g. Pathology.
4 "h. Bacteriology.
5 "i. Sanitation and hygiene.
6 "j. Public health regulations.
7 "k. Other courses of instruction in fundamental
8 subjects as may be prescribed by the Alabama Board of Funeral
9 Service.
10 "(2) ALKALINE HYDROLYSIS. The technical process that
11 reduces human remains to bone fragments using heat, water, and
12 chemical agents.
13 "(3) ALTERNATIVE CONTAINER. A nonmetal receptacle or
14 enclosure, without ornamentation or a fixed interior lining,
15 which is designed for the encasement of human remains and
16 which is made of cardboard, pressed-wood, composition
17 materials, with or without an outside covering, pouches of
18 canvas, or other materials.
19 "(3)(4) AMERICAN BOARD OF FUNERAL SERVICE EDUCATION.
20 That funeral service educational organization which is an
21 agency granted official recognition by the United States
22 Secretary of Education and which is composed of members
23 representing the American Association of College of Mortuary
24 Science, the Conference of Funeral Service Examining Board of
25 the United States, Inc., the National Association of Colleges
26 of Mortuary Science, and the University Mortuary Science
27 Education Association and which has as its object the
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1 furtherance of education in the field of funeral service and
2 in fields necessary to, or allied with, the field of funeral
3 service, and further to formulate standards of funeral service
4 education and to grant accreditation to qualified schools and
5 colleges of mortuary science and to do all things incidental
6 to the foregoing.
7 "(4)(5) APPRENTICE EMBALMER or EMBALMER'S
8 APPRENTICE. Any person engaged in the study of the art of
9 embalming under the instructions and supervision of a licensed
10 embalmer practicing in this state.
11 "(5)(6) APPRENTICE FUNERAL DIRECTOR or FUNERAL
12 DIRECTOR'S APPRENTICE. Any person operating under or in
13 association with a funeral director for the purpose of
14 learning the business or profession of funeral director, to
15 the end that he or she may become licensed under this chapter.
16 "(7) ARRANGEMENT CONFERENCE FEE. The charge to the
17 purchaser in conjunction with the arrangement conference
18 conducted by a cemetery authority.
19 "(8) AT NEED. At the time of death or immediately
20 following death.
21 "(6)(9) AUTHORIZING AGENT. A person at least 18
22 years of age, except in the case of a surviving spouse or
23 parent, who is legally entitled to order the cremation or
24 final disposition of particular human remains.
25 "(10) BASIC SERVICES FEE. The fee for the
26 professional services of the funeral director and staff that
27 is added to the total cost of the funeral arrangements. The
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1 term includes a charge for services performed in conducting
2 the arrangements conference, planning the funeral, securing
3 the necessary permits, preparing the notices, and coordinating
4 the cemetery or crematory arrangements.
5 "(11) BELOW-GROUND CRYPT. A preplaced enclosed
6 chamber, usually constructed of reinforced concrete, poured in
7 place or a precast unit installed in quantity, either
8 side-by-side or multiple depth, and covered by earth or sod
9 and known also as a lawn crypt or turf-top crypt.
10 "(12) BENEFICIARY. One who benefits from an act,
11 such as one for whom a preneed contract is entered into or the
12 successor-in-interest of a life insurance policy.
13 "(7)(13) BOARD. The Alabama Board of Funeral
14 Service.
15 "(14) BRANCH. Any person or entity that is part of a
16 common business enterprise that has a certificate of authority
17 issued pursuant to Article 5 and elects to operate under a
18 name other than that of the common business enterprise.
19 "(15) BURIAL. The placement of human remains in a
20 grave space or lawn crypt.
21 "(8)(16) CASH ADVANCE ITEMS. Any item of service or
22 merchandise described to a purchaser using the term cash
23 advance, accommodation, cash disbursement, or similar term. A
24 cash advance item is also any item obtained from a third party
25 and paid for by a funeral provider on behalf of a purchaser.
26 Cash advance items include, but are not limited to, all of the
27 following:
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1 "a. Cemetery or crematory services.
2 "b. Pallbearers.
3 "c. Public, or other, transportation.
4 "d. Clergy honoraria.
5 "e. Flowers.
6 "f. Musicians or singers.
7 "g. Nurses.
8 "h. Obituary notices.
9 "i. Funeral programs.
10 "j. Gratuities.
11 "k. Death certificates.
12 "l. Outer burial containers.
13 "m. Cemetery plots.
14 "n. Escorts.
15 "(9)(17) CASKET. A rigid container that is designed
16 for the encasement of human remains, usually constructed of
17 wood, metal, or similar material, and ornamented and lined
18 with fabric.
19 "(10)(18) CEMETERY. A place established, maintained,
20 managed, operated, or improved and which is dedicated to and
21 used or intended to be used for the permanent interment of
22 human remains and their memorialization. It may be either land
23 or earth interment; a columbarium; a mausoleum for vault or
24 crypt entombment; a structure or place used or intended to be
25 used for the interment of cremated remains; cryogenic storage;
26 or any combination of one or more thereof.
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1 "(11)(19) CEMETERIAN or CEMETERY AUTHORITY. Any
2 individual, person, firm, profit or nonprofit corporation,
3 trustee, partnership, society, religious society, church
4 association or denomination, municipality, or other group or
5 entity, however organized, insofar as they or any of them may
6 now or hereafter establish, own, operate, lease, control, or
7 manage one or more cemeteries, burial parks, mausoleums,
8 columbariums, or any combination or variation thereof, or hold
9 lands or structures for burial grounds or burial purposes in
10 this state and engage in the operation of a cemetery,
11 including any one or more of the following: The care and
12 maintenance of a cemetery; the interment, entombment, and
13 memorialization of the human dead in a cemetery; the sale,
14 installation, care, maintenance, or any combination thereof,
15 with respect of monuments, markers, foundations, memorials,
16 burial vaults, urns, crypts, mausoleums, columbariums, flower
17 vases, floral arrangements, and other cemetery accessories,
18 for installation or use within a cemetery; and the supervision
19 and conduct of funeral and burial services within the bounds
20 of the cemetery.
21 "(20) CEMETERY MERCHANDISE. Any personal property
22 offered for sale, contracted for sale, or sold for use in
23 connection with the burial, final disposition,
24 memorialization, interment, entombment, or inurnment of human
25 remains by a cemetery authority. The term specifically
26 includes, but is not limited to, the casket, the outer burial
27 container, and the memorial.
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1 "(21) CEMETERY SALES AGENT. Any person who is
2 licensed under this chapter to sell cemetery services or
3 cemetery merchandise.
4 "(22) CEMETERY SERVICES. At need or preneed services
5 provided by a cemetery authority for interment, entombment,
6 inurnment, and installation of cemetery merchandise.
7 "(23) CERTIFICATE HOLDER. A funeral establishment,
8 cemetery authority, third-party seller, or any other person to
9 whom a valid certificate of authority to sell preneed
10 contracts has been granted by the board.
11 "(24) COLUMBARIUM. A structure or room or space in a
12 building or structure used or intended to be used for the
13 inurnment of cremated remains.
14 "(25) CONSUMER PROTECTION FEE. A fee charged for
15 each final disposition arranged or performed in the state.
16 "(12)(26) CONVICTION. The entry of a plea of guilty
17 or a guilty verdict rendered by any court of competent
18 jurisdiction, excluding traffic violations.
19 "(13)(27) CREMATED REMAINS. Human remains recovered
20 after the completion of the cremation process, including
21 pulverization, which leaves only bone fragments reduced to
22 unidentifiable dimensions, and the residue of any foreign
23 materials that were cremated with the human remains.
24 "(28) CREMATED REMAINS CONTAINER. A receptacle in
25 which cremated remains are placed.
26 "(14)(29) CREMATION. The technical irreversible
27 process, using heat, flames, or chemical agents, that reduces
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1 human remains to bone fragments. The reduction takes place
2 through heat and evaporation. Cremation shall include the
3 processing, and may include the pulverization, of the bone
4 fragments. Cremation is a process and is a method of final
5 disposition.
6 "(15)(30) CREMATIONIST. A person licensed by the
7 board to perform the procedure of cremation.
8 "(16)(31) CREMATION CHAMBER. The retort or vessel
9 used to reduce human remains to bone fragments.
10 "(17)(32) CREMATION CONTAINER. The container in
11 which human remains are transported to a crematory, in which
12 human remains are placed in upon arrival at a crematory, or
13 for storage and placement in a cremation chamber for
14 cremation.
15 "(18)(33) CREMATORY. A building or portion of a
16 building that houses a cremation chamber and that may house a
17 holding facility for purposes of cremation and as part of a
18 funeral establishment.
19 "(34) CREMATORY AUTHORITY. Any person who owns or
20 controls a crematory.
21 "(35) DEATH CERTIFICATE. A legal document containing
22 vital statistics pertaining to the life and death of the
23 deceased.
24 "(36) DECEASED or DECEDENT. One who is no longer
25 living.
26 "(19)(37) EMBALMER. Any person engaged or holding
27 himself or herself out as engaged in the business, practice,
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1 science, or profession of embalming, whether on his or her own
2 behalf or in the employ of a registered and licensed funeral
3 director.
4 "(20)(38) EMBALMING. The practice, science, or
5 profession, as commonly practiced, of preserving,
6 disinfecting, and preparing by application of chemicals or
7 other effectual methods, human dead for burial, cremation, or
8 transportation.
9 "(39) ENCASEMENT. The placement of human remains in
10 a rigid container including, but not limited to, a casket or
11 urn.
12 "(40) ENDOWMENT CARE. The maintenance and repair of
13 all places in a cemetery, subject to the