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Licensing Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) - Cemetery Oversight

  1. Application Process
  2. Business Requirements
  3. Business License
  4. Felony Convictions
  5. Financial Solvency
  6. Name Similarity
  7. Out-of-State Registrant/Licensee
  8. Paper License
  9. License Application
  10. Salesperson License
  11. Salespersons

1. Application Process – I have submitted my application. How long does it take to process?
The application approval process may take two-three weeks, as described below. If the application is incomplete or incorrect, the process will take additional time.

  1. The first step is for the financial institution responsible for handling the application fee to process the applicant's check.
  2. Once the check clears, the application is sent to MOCO for review, which typically begins approximately two or three days after the check clears.
  3. Depending on the number of applications being processed, the review period typically takes five days. However, incomplete or incorrect applications take longer to review. If information is missing, MOCO’s staff will attempt to contact the applicant and request the missing information. If the applicant does not respond, then MOCO’s staff will return the application to the applicant.
  4. Once all the information is correct, the application is reviewed and approved by the director.
  5. Once the application is approved, all of the applicant's information is loaded onto MOCO's licensing database. The registrant will receive a paper license in the mail within 10-14 business days of the application being approved.

2. Business Requirements – Are the requirements for an existing MOCO registrant/licensee the same as for an original registration/license submission?
Yes, the requirements are the same, regardless of how long the applicant has been registered or licensed.

3. Business License – Who can apply for an individual/business license?

  1. An individual must register with the MOCO before engaging in the operation of a cemetery, crematory and/or a burial goods business in Maryland, and the registration issued by the director of MOCO is not transferable.
  2. An individual applicant for registration to operate a cemetery, crematory and/or provide burial goods must:
    1. Be at least 18 years of age,
    2. Be of good character and reputation,
    3. Demonstrate that the cemetery or burial goods business with which the applicant is affiliated is financially stable, and
    4. File an application form as required by the director of the MOCO and pay a nonrefundable fee.
  3. A corporation, limited liability company or partnership must obtain a permit issued by MOCO before the business may operate a cemetery, crematory and/or burial goods business in Maryland.
    To qualify for a permit to operate a cemetery, crematory and/or burial goods business, the corporation, limited liability company or partnership must:
    1. Designate a registered cemeterian or seller as the individual responsible for the oversight of each cemetery or burial goods business;
    2. Provide the names and business addresses of each affiliated cemetery or burial goods business;
    3. Provide a list of the officers, directors, members, partners, agents, and employees of the business entity applying for the permit; and
    4. File an application form as required by the director of MOCO and pay a nonrefundable fee.
  4. Registrations and permits issued by MOCO expire two years after the date of issuance. Fees for registrations and permits are set by the director and are promulgated in the Code of Maryland Regulations (COMAR).

For additional information about business licenses, you may wish to check the Business Licenses Online and to also check the requirements at the State Department of Assessments and Taxation.

4. Felony Convictions – When I was younger, I was convicted of a felony. Can I still obtain a MOCO registration/ license?
Each applicant is required to report to MOCO any conviction of a felony or a misdemeanor. The applicant must provide a "true-test copy" from the clerk's office of the court where the conviction occurred. The facts MOCO shall consider in the denial, reprimand, renewal, suspension, or revocation of a registration/license when an applicant or registrant/licensee is convicted of a felony or misdemeanor are: the nature of the crime; the relationship of the crime to the activities authorized by the registration/license; with respect to a felony, the length of time since the conviction; and the behavior and activities of the applicant or registrant/licensee before and after the conviction.

5. Financial Solvency – What is financial solvency and why is it required?
Each for-profit cemetery that provides burial goods is required to submit a balance sheet accompanied by a review report prepared by a certified public accountant. Upon renewal of their permits, these cemeteries are required to submit a comparative balance sheet with a review report by a CPA.

In addition, each sole proprietor registered cemeterian, permit holder, or any other person subject to the registration or permit provisions who sells or offers to sell to the public a burial lot or burial right in a cemetery as to which perpetual care is stated or implied shall have a perpetual care trust fund and is required to submit yearly to MOCO. Furthermore, if the said cemetery is selling preneed merchandise to the public, it is also required to have a preneed trust report that must be submitted yearly to MOCO.

6. Name Similarity – How do I know if a name is available to use for my cemetery, crematory and/burial goods business?
MOCO regulations state that the trade name of an individual, partnership, proprietorship, limited liability company, or corporation may not be accepted if the name is the same as a name being used by an existing registrant/licensee, or is so similar to the name being used by an existing registrant/licensee that it might cause confusion on the part of the public. Therefore, prior to registering the business name of a company with the Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation, an applicant is advised to contact MOCO to make sure that the proposed name is available.

7. Out-of-State registrant/licensee – I am a burial goods business providing burial goods in Maryland. Do I need to obtain a registration/license in Maryland?
Yes. An individual must register with MOCO before:

  1. Engaging in the operation of a cemetery in Maryland, or
  2. Providing burial goods in Maryland.

This is true regardless of whether the registrant holds a license in another state. It is also true even if the registrant does not have an office in Maryland. Out-of-state registrants must also register with the Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation.

8. Paper License – We have received our e-mail confirmation, however, we have not yet received our paper license in the mail.
Each registrant/licensee is mailed a paper copy of the license, and typically, the license arrives 10-14 business days after the application is approved. However, if you have received your electronic copy, you may commence business.

9. License Application – Is there a testing requirement to obtain a cemetery, crematory, or burial goods business license in the state of Maryland?
Yes, in order to obtain a crematory operator’s license, an applicant needs to successfully complete a state-approved crematory operator certification program. The applicant must also pass a test administered by the entity offering the certification program and complete a machine training program.

10. Salesperson License – How can I get a MOCO individual license to work in a cemetery, crematory and/or burial goods business?
In order to apply for any one of the following individual registrations/licenses you will need to be an employee of a registered/licensed cemetery, crematory and/or burial goods business:

  • Registered Cemetarian
  • Registered Seller
  • Sales Counselor
  • Crematory Operator

11. Salespersons – What are the business license requirements for sales counselor?
A salesperson is required to obtain a MOCO sales counselor registration/ license and to be an employee of a registered/licensed cemetery, crematory and/or burial goods business.

  1. Be at least 18 years of age,
  2. Be of good character and reputation,
  3. Demonstrate that the cemetery or burial goods business with which the applicant is affiliated is financially stable, and
  4. File an application form as required by the director of MOCO and pay a nonrefundable fee.

A registration/license issued by the director of MOCO is not transferable.