Section 22-9A-16Authorization for final disposition.
(a) The funeral director or person acting as the funeral director who first assumes custody of a dead body shall, prior to final disposition of the body, or prior to removal of the dead body from the state, obtain authorization for final disposition of the body or removal of the body from the state. The completion of the medical certification of cause of death on the death certificate by the physician, county medical examiner, state medical examiner, or coroner shall constitute authorization. If the body is to be cremated or buried at sea, additional authorization shall be obtained from the county medical examiner, state medical examiner, or coroner.
(b) With the consent of the physician, county medical examiner, state medical examiner, or coroner who is to certify the cause of death, a dead body may be moved from the place of death for the purpose of being prepared for final disposition. Prior to removing a dead body from the place of death, the funeral director shall do either of the following:
(1) Obtain assurance from the attending physician that death is from natural causes and that the physician will assume responsibility for certifying to the cause of death and receive permission to remove the body from the place of death.
(2) Notify the county medical examiner or coroner and obtain authorization to remove the body.
(c) Prior to final disposition of a dead fetus, the funeral director, the person in charge of the institution, or other person assuming responsibility for final disposition of the fetus shall obtain from the parents authorization for final disposition. In the event the parents are incompetent, unable, or unwilling to sign the documents authorizing final disposition, the institution where the fetal death occurred, or if the fetal death occurred outside an institution, any licensed hospital in reasonable proximity, shall establish a mechanism to determine the final disposition.
(d) A written authorization for final disposition issued under the law of another state or the District of Columbia which accompanies a dead body or fetus brought into this state shall be authority for final disposition of the body or fetus in this state.
(e) When a dead body is released or disposed of by an institution, the person in charge of the institution shall keep a record showing the name of the deceased, date of death, name and address of the person to whom the body was released, date of removal from the institution, or if finally disposed of by the institution, the date, place, and manner of disposition.
(f) A funeral director, embalmer, or other person who removes from the place of death or transports or finally disposes of a dead body or fetus, in addition to filing any certificate or other report required by this chapter or rules promulgated pursuant to this chapter, shall keep a record which shall identify the name of the deceased, the date and place of death, and the date, place, and manner of disposition.
(g) Authorization for disinterment and reinterment shall be required prior to disinterment of a dead body or fetus as prescribed by rules of the board.
(Acts 1992, No. 92-607, p. 1255, §16.)