Know your obligations
As a BC-licensed funeral provider, funeral director, embalmer or apprentice, you need to understand the laws that apply to your sector and maintain your good standing with our office. This is a general overview of our expectations and the laws we oversee. It is your responsibility to review the laws in detail, become aware of the municipal bylaws, and get independent legal advice, if necessary.
Read the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act.
Read the Cremation, Interment and Funeral Services Act.
Read the Cremation, Interment and Funeral Services Regulation.
Read the Consumer Contract Regulation.
Manage your preneed contracts and trust accounts
Submit your preneed financial report
If you offer preneed cemetery or funeral services, you must annually submit your preneed financial report, which includes the account information for each preneed contract for the previous fiscal year, within 90 days after your fiscal year-end date.
Your preneed financial report must include the following information:
- client name and address
- client contract date
- total sale price
- amount received or held at the beginning of the year
- monies received during the year (scheduled payments or new accounts)
- amount placed in trust
- monies paid out including cancellations, refunds and monies converted at need
- year-end balance (total amount received, placed in trust and interest credited)
- investment account number
You must submit your preneed financial report through MyAccount. Preneed financial reports that do not meet our requirements are considered incomplete and will not be recorded as received. All submissions received past 90 days after your fiscal year-end date will be considered late and a late penalty fee will apply.
Report death registrations and submit quarterly administrative fee.
In BC, you must report and pay an administrative fee on a quarterly basis for each death registered under the Vital Statistics Act.
Display your licence
You must publicly display your licence at your place of business. You must also include your licence number and business address on any print or web materials, including:
- business cards
- print collaterals including brochures and flyers
- documentation such as contracts
- business letterheads
If your business is a corporation that is owned or partially owned by a public company, you are required to state this affiliation on any print or web materials, as listed above.
Renew your licence
Renew annually by September 14 to maintain your funeral provider licence.
Understand our inspection process
We perform routine, random, follow-up and complaint-based inspections on all our regulated businesses to ensure they comply with the law.
For funeral directors & embalmers
Report changes to your licence
You must notify us if you are transferring from one funeral to another, or to another location within the same company. You must also notify us if you wish to place your licence in an inactive status for a period of time.
Complete your continuing education requirements
In BC, all funeral directors and embalmers are required to complete six hours of continuing education credits for each licence type, every two years from your initial licensing date.
Report changes to your licence
You must notify us if you are changing employers or supervisors, or when you cease employment.
Submit a notice of change form.
If you have completed less than 1,800 hours of practical training and less than 25 funeral contracts, a licensed funeral director must be physically present when you are:
- involved in negotiating or signing an at-need funeral contract
- arranging, conducting or directing a funeral or memorial service
- arranging for the interment of cremated or human remains; and
- involved with the care and preparation of human remains prior to disposition
As a funeral apprentice, you may transfer human remains under the general direction of a licensed funeral director.
If you are performing duties that fall outside those of a funeral director (such as answering telephones, handing out price lists, washing cars, etc.), you do not need a licensed funeral director to be present.
Once you have completed the required 1,800 hours of practical training and completed 25 funeral contracts, the levels of supervision may be reduced to require that the apprentice have access to and be able to readily communicate with a licensed funeral director. However, it is up to your supervising funeral director or funeral to decide when you can move from direct supervision to general supervision.
If you have completed less than 25 embalming procedures, a licensed embalmer must be physically present when you are engaged in the disinfection, preservation, preparation or restoration of human remains.
If you are performing duties that fall outside those of an embalmer (such as answering telephones, handing out price lists, washing cars, etc.), you do not need a licensed funeral director to be present.
Once you have completed the required 1,800 hours of practical training and completed 25 embalmings, the levels of supervision may be reduced to require that the apprentice have access to and be able to readily communicate with a licensed embalmer. However, it is up to your supervising embalmer or funeral to decide when you can move from direct supervision to general supervision.