Cremation in NC
NC Board of Funeral Service
Fact Sheet Concerning Cremation in North Carolina
(Updated April 2014)

  1. The North Carolina Board of Funeral Service (the "Board") is responsible for licensing and inspecting crematories in North Carolina.
  2. There are currently 117 crematories in North Carolina.
  3. Last year (2013) over 32,000 cremations were conducted in North Carolina. 
  4. North Carolina also has 756 funeral homes. Most of the crematories in North Carolina are associated with a funeral home.
  5. All crematories operating for the cremation of human bodies in North Carolina must be licensed and are inspected regularly by the Board. There are no exceptions to this licensing requirement for crematories performing cremation of human bodies.
  6. North Carolina has three full-time inspectors for funeral homes and crematories. The Board’s inspectors inspect not only the facility itself, but also the records that the Board requires the crematories to maintain.
  7. In North Carolina crematories must complete and maintain Board-prescribed documents which track the decedent through the cremation process.
  8. If the consumer picks up the cremated remains, the consumer must sign BFS Form 56D to acknowledge receipt of the cremated remains. If the cremated remains are mailed to the consumer, the crematory must send the cremated remains by certified mail with return receipt. When the crematory receives the return receipt, it must attach the return receipt to BFS Form 56.
  9. Crematories must file monthly reports with the Board. The reports include a list of each person who was cremated within the past month. The Board charges substantial penalties for submitting the report late.
  10. North Carolina law limits access to crematories while a cremation is taking place. Nonetheless, family members may be present during a cremation if they wish. Thus, consumers have the option of being 100% certain the cremated remains they receive are those of their loved one.