Code of Alabama - Title 34: Professions and Businesses - Section 34-13-120 - License required; crematory requirements; application and inspection; records; violations; rulemaking authority

Section 34-13-120 - License required; crematory requirements; application and inspection; records; violations; rulemaking authority.

(a) No person, firm, corporation, association, entity, or funeral establishment, or branch thereof, may operate a crematory for the purpose of cremating dead human bodies, unless licensed by the board as a funeral establishment and the crematory being registered with the board and inspected by the board before any cremations of human remains are performed.

(b) A crematory shall satisfy all of the following requirements and have the following minimum equipment, facilities, and personnel:

(1) Registered with the board.

(2) Inspected by the board before performing any cremations.

(3) Fixed on the premises of a funeral establishment. For the purposes of this subdivision, fixed means permanently attached to the real property where the establishment is situated.

(4) Owned by the same individual, partnership, or corporation as the funeral establishment.

(5) Under the full charge and supervision of a managing cremationist who is licensed by the board as both a funeral director and cremationist and listed on the application as the managing cremationist. No managing cremationist may serve as the regularly employed managing cremationist at another crematory which is owned by a different person, firm, or corporation at the same time for the purpose of qualifying the other crematory under this chapter.

(6) Subject to all local, state, and federal health and environmental protection requirements and shall obtain all necessary licenses and permits from the board, the Alabama Department of Public Health, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Alabama Department of Environmental Management, and other appropriate local, state, or federal agencies.

(7) Have a holding room within the crematory facility designated for the retention of human remains before and after cremation.

(8) Have at least one of each of the following:

a. An operable refrigeration unit for the storage of human remains.

b. An operable cremation chamber for the cremation of human remains.

c. An operable processor for reducing identifiable bone fragments.

d. An operable ventilation unit in conjunction with the processor.

e. A hand washing sink with hot and cold running water.

(9) Have all other necessary equipment and supplies, in working condition, needed to complete the cremation process.

(10) Have nonporous floors in the holding room, refrigeration unit, and around the cremation chamber.

(11) Maintained in a clean, orderly, and sanitary manner.

(c) The application to operate a crematory shall be made in writing on a form prescribed by the board. The application shall be verified by the applicant or, if the applicant is a corporation, firm, or other organization, by an officer or member thereof, and shall be accompanied by an initial application fee established by the board not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500).

(d) Upon receipt of the application, the board shall make inspection of the crematory. No crematory shall operate unless the crematory facility and funeral establishment have been inspected and approved as meeting all requirements of this chapter and rules of the board.

(e) Each funeral establishment and crematory which performs cremations shall maintain the following records:

(1) A cremation log containing any information required by the board.

(2) A copy of the cremation authorization form and the state identification form.

(3) A copy of the affidavit attesting to each cremation performed and, if the cremation is performed for another funeral establishment or entity, the identity of that funeral establishment or entity.

(f) The board shall inspect the records and premises of any funeral establishment operating a crematory. In making inspections, the board shall have access to all records, the crematory building, the cremation chambers, and the holding room for human remains before and after cremation. No prior notification of the inspection is required to be given to the funeral establishment. If any funeral establishment performing cremation services fails to allow an inspection or any part thereof, it shall be grounds for the suspension or revocation of a license or other disciplinary action against the licensee, as the board may deem reasonable and necessary to the extent of the law. The board shall conduct annually at least one unannounced inspection of each licensed funeral establishment performing cremation services.

(g) Each funeral establishment performing cremation services shall keep records as required by the board to assure compliance with all laws relating to the disposition of human remains, and shall file annually with the board on October 1 a cremation report in the form prescribed by the board, describing the operations of the licensee, including the number of cremations, the disposition thereof, and any other information the board may require. Records required by the board shall be kept for four years by the funeral establishment.

(h) Each funeral establishment performing cremations shall maintain and submit a copy of the service, maintenance, or inspection reports of work completed or performed on the cremation chamber to the board within 30 days after completion.

(i) A funeral establishment or branch thereof, that has a crematory for cremating dead human remains shall at all times comply with this chapter and any board rule adopted pursuant to this chapter. Failure to comply, as determined by the board, may result in the revocation of the license of the funeral establishment, or branch thereof, pursuant to this chapter.

(j) The board shall adopt and enforce rules as reasonable and necessary for the operation of crematories in the state and to protect the health, welfare, and safety of the people of this state.

(k) A crematory facility licensed by the board may be used only for the cremation of human remains.

(l) A funeral establishment or crematory operating in the state before October 1, 2017, shall file with the board all new forms as required by this section, and shall be exempt from any new crematory facility requirements of this chapter that become effective on August 1, 2017. If major structural renovations are made to the crematory facility, the cremation chamber is relocated, or the funeral establishment is closed and reopened, the affected crematory facility shall satisfy all requirements relating to crematory facilities as provided in this chapter. Each cremationist licensed by the board on August 1, 2017, shall have until October 1, 2018, to satisfy the requirements of Section 34-13-120.01.

(Act 2002-239, p. 498, §3; Act 2011-623, p. 1439, §1; Act 2017-433, §1.)

Last modified: May 3, 2021