Colorado Funeral Directors Association

Standards in Funeral Service

All funeral establishments and crematories must be registered with the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA).

Although the State of Colorado does NOT license funeral directors or embalmers, these individuals must be employed by a registered funeral establishment or registered crematory to be eligible to practice in Colorado.

There is no licensing agency for funeral directors or embalmers who wish to transfer a license from another state. 

Click here for frequently asked questions about licensing.

A Brief History

Colorado's Legislative Assembly abolished the previous licensing system in 1982, primarily because of a lack of complaints by consumers and a cumbersome regulatory system. Since that time, the Colorado Funeral Directors Association has worked diligently to preserve the integrity of funeral service by promoting standards of practice and setting high ethical standards for funeral service practitioners in the State of Colorado.

In 1982, the association created the Colorado Funeral Service Board (CFSB), initially called the "Mortuary Science Commission", to promote professionalism under a voluntary system of certification, registration and the development and maintenance of standards. Although CFSB's standards are comparable to other states' licensing requirements, CFSB's certification is not administered by a state regulatory agency.

Participation in the CFSB's professional certification program is strictly voluntary. Individuals who apply for CFSB certification should be commended for their commitment to uphold the integrity and respect of the funeral service profession through formal education, supervised training and internship,  ongoing professional development, community involvement and subscribing to a code of ethics.

Regulation of Funeral Establishments and Crematories in Colorado

For many years, CFDA has actively promoted legislation that would restore licensing for funeral professionals in Colorado. The state legislature has repeatedly voted down these measures because there are relatively few complaints by Colorado consumers about funeral service providers in the state. 

In 2009, the Colorado General Assembly passed House Bill 09-1202 that restored regulation for funeral establishments and crematories. This act created a new licensing system for funeral homes and crematories in Colorado, administered by the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA), Colorado's consumer protection agency.  This legislation also:

  • Required that all funeral establishments and crematories register annually with DORA and provide information about name(s) of the business(es), ownership, location(s), and type of services provided.
  • Created regulations that specifically address cremation which are not found in other Colorado statutes.
  • Requires that all establishments and crematories comply with basic Standards of Practice for embalming, cremating and transporting. 
  • Instituted "title protection" for the positions of "Funeral Director", "Embalmer", "Mortuary Science Practitioner", and "Cremationist", to ensure consumers that their funeral service provider has basic education and training requirements.
  • Provided an agency responsible for the oversight of registrations, to receive and investigate complaints, and to administer disciplinary measures for violation of state laws.
While there is still no licensing for individual funeral directors and embalmers, state laws govern funeral service practices through licensed funeral establishments and crematories.

A License is Required to Sell Preneed Contracts

Funeral establishments that "sell or offer to sell" advance planning of funeral arrangements through a preneed funeral contract must be licensed as a Preneed Contract Seller through the Colorado Division of Insurance.

Funding for preneed funeral contracts is permitted by insurance policy or by a trust account. 

Colorado Funeral Directors Association,  P O Box 631664, Highlands Ranch, CO 80163-1664 U.S.A. 

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