December 11, 2019
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The Florida Statutes

The 2001 Florida Statutes

Title XXXIII
Regulation Of Trade, Commerce, Investments, And Solicitations
Chapter 497
Funeral And Cemetery Services
View Entire Chapter
Section 497.005, Florida Statutes 2001

497.005  Definitions.--As used in this chapter:

(1)  "At-need solicitation" means any uninvited contact by a licensee or her or his agent for the purpose of the sale of burial services or merchandise to the family or next of kin of a person after her or his death has occurred.

(2)  "Bank of belowground crypts" means any construction unit of belowground crypts which is acceptable to the department and which a cemetery uses to initiate its belowground crypt program or to add to existing belowground crypt structures.

(3)  "Belowground crypts" consist of interment space in preplaced chambers, either side by side or multiple depth, covered by earth and sod and known also as "lawn crypts," "westminsters," or "turf-top crypts."

(4)  "Board" means the Board of Funeral and Cemetery Services.

(5)  "Burial merchandise," "funeral merchandise," or "merchandise" means any personal property offered or sold by any person for use in connection with the final disposition, memorialization, interment, entombment, or inurnment of human remains.

(6)  "Burial right" means the right to use a grave space, mausoleum, columbarium, ossuary, or scattering garden for the interment, entombment, inurnment, or other disposition of human remains.

(7)  "Burial service," "funeral service," or "service" means any service offered or provided by any person in connection with the final disposition, memorialization, interment, entombment, or inurnment of human remains.

(8)  "Care and maintenance" means the perpetual process of keeping a cemetery and its lots, graves, grounds, landscaping, roads, paths, parking lots, fences, mausoleums, columbaria, vaults, crypts, utilities, and other improvements, structures, and embellishments in a well-cared-for and dignified condition, so that the cemetery does not become a nuisance or place of reproach and desolation in the community. As specified in the rules of the board, "care and maintenance" may include, but is not limited to, any or all of the following activities: mowing the grass at reasonable intervals; raking and cleaning the grave spaces and adjacent areas; pruning of shrubs and trees; suppression of weeds and exotic flora; and maintenance, upkeep, and repair of drains, water lines, roads, buildings, and other improvements. "Care and maintenance" may include, but is not limited to, reasonable overhead expenses necessary for such purposes, including maintenance of machinery, tools, and equipment used for such purposes. "Care and maintenance" may also include repair or restoration of improvements necessary or desirable as a result of wear, deterioration, accident, damage, or destruction. "Care and maintenance" does not include expenses for the construction and development of new grave spaces or interment structures to be sold to the public.

(9)  "Casket" means a rigid container which is designed for the encasement of human remains and which is usually constructed of wood or metal, ornamented, and lined with fabric.

(10)  "Cemetery" means a place dedicated to and used or intended to be used for the permanent interment of human remains. A cemetery may contain land or earth interment; mausoleum, vault, or crypt interment; a columbarium, ossuary, scattering garden, or other structure or place used or intended to be used for the interment or disposition of cremated human remains; or any combination of one or more of such structures or places.

(11)  "Cemetery company" means any legal entity that owns or controls cemetery lands or property.

(12)  "Certificateholder" or "licensee" means the person or entity that is authorized under this chapter to sell preneed funeral or burial services, preneed funeral or burial merchandise, or burial rights. Each term shall include the other, as applicable, as the context requires. For the purposes of chapter 120, all certificateholders, licensees, and registrants shall be considered licensees.

(13)  "Columbarium" means a structure or building which is substantially exposed above the ground and which is intended to be used for the inurnment of cremated human remains.

(14)  "Common business enterprise" means a group of two or more business entities that share common ownership in excess of 50 percent.

(15)  "Cremation" includes any mechanical or thermal process whereby a dead human body is reduced to ashes. Cremation also includes any other mechanical or thermal process whereby human remains are pulverized, burned, recremated, or otherwise further reduced in size or quantity.

(16)  "Department" means the Department of Banking and Finance.

(17)  "Direct disposer" means any person who is registered in this state to practice direct disposition pursuant to the provisions of chapter 470.

(18)  "Final disposition" means the final disposal of a dead human body whether by interment, entombment, burial at sea, cremation, or any other means and includes, but is not limited to, any other disposition of remains for which a segregated charge is imposed.

(19)  "Funeral director" means any person licensed in this state to practice funeral directing pursuant to the provisions of chapter 470.

(20)  "Grave space" means a space of ground in a cemetery intended to be used for the interment in the ground of human remains.

(21)  "Human remains" means the bodies of deceased persons and includes bodies in any stage of decomposition and cremated remains.

(22)  "Mausoleum" means a structure or building which is substantially exposed above the ground and which is intended to be used for the entombment of human remains.

(23)  "Mausoleum section" means any construction unit of a mausoleum which is acceptable to the department and which a cemetery uses to initiate its mausoleum program or to add to its existing mausoleum structures.

(24)  "Monument" means any product used for identifying a grave site and cemetery memorials of all types, including monuments, markers, and vases.

(25)  "Monument establishment" means a facility that operates independently of a cemetery or funeral establishment and that offers to sell monuments or monument services to the public for placement in a cemetery.

(26)  "Net assets" means the amount by which the total assets of a certificateholder, excluding goodwill, franchises, customer lists, patents, trademarks, and receivables from or advances to officers, directors, employees, salespersons, and affiliated companies, exceed total liabilities of the certificateholder. For purposes of this definition, the term "total liabilities" does not include the capital stock, paid-in capital, or retained earnings of the certificateholder.

(27)  "Net worth" means total assets minus total liabilities pursuant to generally accepted accounting principles.

(28)  "Ossuary" means a receptacle used for the communal placement of cremated human remains without benefit of an urn or any other container. It may or may not include memorialization.

(29)  "Outer burial container" means an enclosure into which a casket is placed and includes, but is not limited to, vaults made of concrete, steel, fiberglass, or copper; sectional concrete enclosures; crypts; and wooden enclosures.

(30)  "Preneed contract" means any arrangement or method, of which the provider of funeral merchandise or services has actual knowledge, whereby any person agrees to furnish funeral merchandise or service in the future.

(31)  "Religious institution" means an organization formed primarily for religious purposes which has qualified for exemption from federal income tax as an exempt organization under the provisions of s. 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended.

(32)  "Scattering garden" means a location set aside, within a cemetery, which is used for the spreading or broadcasting of cremated remains. It may or may not include memorialization.

(33)  "Servicing agent" means any person acting as an independent contractor whose fiduciary responsibility is to assist both the trustee and certificateholder hereunder in administrating their responsibilities pursuant to this chapter.

(34)  "Solicitation" means any communication which directly or implicitly requests an immediate oral response from the recipient.

(35)  "Statutory accounting" means generally accepted accounting principles, except as modified by this chapter.

History.--s. 3, ch. 59-363; s. 1, ch. 65-288; ss. 12, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 210, ch. 71-377; ss. 1, 2, ch. 72-78; s. 3, ch. 76-168; s. 2, ch. 76-251; s. 1, ch. 77-457; ss. 4, 39, 40, ch. 80-238; ss. 2, 3, ch. 81-318; s. 3, ch. 85-16; s. 2, ch. 85-202; s. 1, ch. 89-8; ss. 40, 122, ch. 93-399; s. 3, ch. 96-400; s. 1142, ch. 97-103; s. 2, ch. 98-268; s. 2, ch. 2000-195; s. 2, ch. 2001-120.

Note.--Former s. 559.32.

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