With a mandate to ensure Ontario consumers are being served by competent and professional licensees, the Bereavement Authority of Ontario sets and imposes training standards and mobility requirements aimed at delivering optimal outcomes.
For funeral and transfer service, the Funeral, Burial and Cremation Services Act, 2002 establishes the following classes of licences:
What are the authorized practices for each licence class under the Funeral, Burial and Cremation Services Act, 2002?
As stipulated in the Funeral, Burial and Cremation Services Act, 2002, an individual must hold a personal licence if they are selling or offering to sell licensed services or supplies on behalf of a licensed establishment. Unlicensed individuals who choose to perform duties requiring a licence, are committing an offence. Contravention of the Act may be subject to monetary penalties and/or restitution.
Supporting Ontario consumers to prepare final arrangements in advance of the time of need is an important role. Licensed funeral preplanners are responsible for meeting with consumers to prepare and sign preneed contracts on behalf of a licensed establishment.
If you have an interest in offering additional services, you may want to consider completion of the Transfer Service Sales Representative Program.
Supplying the basic requirements for cremation or burial arrangements meets the needs of a specific segment of consumers who don’t require visitation or a formal funeral services. Licensed transfer service sales representatives are employed by a transfer service operator to provide Ontario consumers with direct cremation and direct burial services.
If you have an interest in offering additional services, you may want to consider completion of the Funeral Director – Class 2 Program.
Administering funeral and memorial services serves a valuable role in commemorating lives and supporting the bereaved. The Funeral Director – Class 2 licence permits the licence holder to arrange and direct customized funeral rites and ceremonies on behalf of a licensed establishment. A Funeral Director – Class 2 cannot provide arterial embalming or restoring of deceased human bodies. Those licensed as non-embalming funeral directors prior to July 1, 2012 will automatically receive this licence.
If you have an interest in offering additional services, you may want to consider completion of the Funeral Director – Class 1 Program.
Providing embalming can be a meaningful way to assist those who select it as part of the funeral rituals. The Funeral Director – Class 1 licence permits the licence holder to supply the practice of embalming in addition to all the professional services associated with arranging and directing funeral and memorial services on behalf of a licensed establishment. An embalming funeral director licensed prior to July 1, 2012 will automatically receive this licence.
This licence is needed to operate a full service funeral establishment. It is basically the equivalent of the funeral operator’s licence in effect before July 1, 2012. Any establishment holding a funeral operator’s licence prior to July 1, 2012 will automatically be licensed as a Funeral Establishment Operator – Class 1.
This is a new type of licence required for visitation centres or similar establishments offering room rentals for visitations prior to burials, cremations or scatterings. A visitation centre operator will automatically be licensed as Funeral Establishment Operator – Class 2 after July 1, 2012.
With this type of licence you may operate a transfer service that also sells a limited preparation of deceased bodies. A Funeral Director – Class 1 must manage the day-to-day operations of this service.
Under this licence you may care for or prepare a deceased human body by washing it, applying a disinfectant externally, setting its features and placing it into a casket. However, you may not offer arterial embalming.
This licence also permits you to transfer a human body from the place of death to a holding room, visitation, ceremony or cremation and then to a cemetery or crematorium. It does not permit you to arrange, coordinate, conduct or participate in a visitation, funeral or any other ceremony where human remains (including cremated remains) are present
This licence also permits you to sell caskets and arrange the scattering of cremated remains
Those licensed as a transfer service prior to July 1, 2012 will automatically receive a Transfer Service Operator – Class 2 licence.
With this licence you may only have contact with a deceased human body to remove personal belongings and place it into a casket. You are then permitted to transfer the body from the place of death to a holding room and then to the place of final disposition. You may also sell caskets and arrange the scattering of cremated remains.
This licence does not permit you to arrange, coordinate, conduct or participate in a visitation, funeral or any other ceremony where human remains (including cremated remains) are present.
The process for achieving licensure in any of the four personal licence classes is consistent throughout and requires completion of the following steps:
An individual must fulfill all requirements for each step prior to being eligible to move forward.
To learn more about Funeral Service Education requirements and Internship competencies, visit the BAO’s Education & Training page.
If you are a funeral professional licensed in good standing in a Canadian province outside of Ontario, you may be eligible to apply for a personal licence in Ontario under the Agreement on Internal Trade.
To have your credentials assessed please submit the following items to the Bereavement Authority of Ontario:
Prior to a personal licence being issued, the candidate must:
If you are a funeral professional licensed in good standing in a jurisdiction outside of Canada, you may be eligible to apply for a personal licence in Ontario.
To have your credentials assessed as a funeral director licensed in good standing in a jurisdiction in the United States, please submit the following items to the Bereavement Authority of Ontario:
Prior to a personal licence being issued, the candidate must:
For applicants licensed in another country, consideration will be given to the applicant's training and experience on an individual basis. Please contact the Bereavement Authority of Ontario to discuss your specific circumstances.
In Ontario all aspiring funeral professionals who have completed the education requirements set by the Registrar, must pass licensing examinations for the specified licence class prior to applying for licensure.
Providing the foundation for all education initiatives, licensing examination questions are based on the competencies identified in the Funeral Sector Professional Competency Profiles – Second Edition.
The 2016 Licensing and Jurisprudence Exams Candidate Guide (*new*) offers an overview of the examination process, defines the application requirements, and provides answers to frequently asked questions.
To support further preparation, a review of relevant legislation is also encouraged:
For Entry to Practice Examination inquiries, such as upcoming exam dates and eligibility requirements, please contact Ext. 207 or email email@example.com.
Personal licence renewal is an annual requirement that must be completed online by the individual licence holder between November 1st and December 31st.
To renewal your personal licence, please access the Member Login page.
The Bereavement Authority of Ontario (BAO) is pleased to announce that bereavement sector licensees who have achieved fifty (50) years of continuous licensure in good standing can now apply for Emeritus Status. Emeritus Status will be granted by the BAO beginning January 2017, and eligible licensees are welcome to apply at any time.
Advantages for obtaining Emeritus Status:
With Emeritus Status, an individual acknowledges that they will not:
The decision to open or purchase an existing business can be both exciting and overwhelming; the good news is the Bereavement Authority of Ontario is here to help.
The Funeral, Burial and Cremation Services Act, 2002 (FBCSA) states that the mission of the Bereavement Authority of Ontario is to "regulate the provision of funeral services and transfer services in accordance with the 'Act' in order that the public interest may be served and protected". To fulfill this mandate, the Bereavement Authority of Ontario is responsible for ensuring Ontario funeral establishments and transfer services are licensed in accordance with the Act.
As a result, all individuals with an interest in opening a new business or purchasing an existing business must comply with all requirements for licensure. For more information please contact the Bereavement Authority of Ontario office.
Business licence renewal is an annual requirement that must be completed between November 1st and December 31st.
Business renewal notices are mailed to each establishment during the latter part of October.
Questions? Call us at 844.493.6356 or use our automated contact form.