Your Rights (Consumer Protections)

There are several agencies that regulate the funeral industry and provide consumer protection. The Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection enforces the Funeral Rule, designed to protect consumers. In addition, in New Jersey, funerals are regulated by two separate agencies, the New Jersey State Board of Mortuary Science and the New Jersey Cemetery Board. Both boards operate under the state Division of Consumer Affairs.

State Board of Mortuary Science

The mortuary board is the agency that licenses New Jersey funeral directors and funeral homes. The mortuary board regulates:

  • funeral director conduct
  • sales practices
  • funeral home facilities
  • licensing
  • continuing education requirements for funeral directors
New Jersey State Board of Mortuary Science
Quin Archer, Executive Director
P.O. Box 45009
Newark, New Jersey 07101
(973) 504-6425
www.njconsumeraffairs.gov/mor/Pages/default.aspx

Cemetery Board

The New Jersey Cemetery Board regulates non-sectarian cemeteries. It is separate from the New Jersey State Board of Mortuary Science, which regulates funeral homes. Duties of the cemetery board include:

  • monitoring cemeteries' obligations to maintain and preserve their grounds in perpetuity
  • approving the purchase and sale of cemetery property for transactions beyond routine grave sales
  • setting and enforcing rules that govern cemetery sales practices
New Jersey Cemetery Board
Quin Archer, Executive Director
P.O. Box 45036
Newark, New Jersey 07101
(973) 504-6553<
www.njconsumeraffairs.gov/cem/Pages/default.aspx

Federal Trade Commission

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regulates the funeral industry through its Bureau of Consumer Protection. The FTC’s Funeral Rule, which has been in place since 1984, requires that funeral directors and firms provide consumers with accurate itemized price information and various other disclosures about funeral goods and services. In New Jersey, only consumers who deal with licensed funeral directors and establishments are protected under the FTC Funeral Rule.

To learn more about the FTC Funeral Rule, visit their Website at http://business.ftc.gov/documents/bus05-complying-funeral-rule