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Funeral Director


Funeral service professionals work with the bereaved during times of emotional need. These professional caregivers enable families and communities to express their emotions and help them to properly grieve.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Provide support to the bereaved during initial stages of grief
  • Arrange and direct funeral ceremonies
  • Arrange for removal of the deceased from the place of death
  • Prepare the body according to the wishes of the survivors and legal requirements
  • Secure information for legal documents
  • File death certificates and other legal papers
  • Assist survivors with details for filing claims for death benefits
  • Help individuals adapt to changes in their lives following a death through post-death counseling and support group activities

Licensing Requirements

You must attend an accredited mortuary school, register with the Bureau as a funeral director student, and graduate. You must also pass the National Board Exam given by the Conference of Funeral Service Examining Boards. The Bureau must receive original, certified copies of both the transcript and the passing board scores in order for you to begin a registered residency. You must serve a 12-month post-graduate residency at a New York State registered funeral firm under the supervision of a licensed and registered NYS funeral director. Eight months into the residency, you will be eligible to take the next scheduled NYS Funeral Director Law Examination. Once you have a passing score and you complete your residency, you will then become a licensed Funeral Director in the State of New York.

After you confirm that the school you graduated from is accredited, call the Bureau of Funeral Directing at 518-402-0785 and request a student application. A section of it must be filled out by the registrar of your school. Have the application returned to us with the applicable registration fee and all other requested documents, and once we receive your passing scores directly from The International Conference of Funeral Service Examining Boards, you will be mailed an application to begin your 12-month residency.

Licensing Authority

New York State Department of Health
Bureau of Funeral Directing
875 Central Avenue
Albany, New York 12206
Phone: (518) 402-0785

Additional Resource

National Funeral Directors Association (Headquarters)
13625 Bishop’s Drive
Brookfield, WI 53005
Toll-free: 800-228-6332
Phone: 262-789-1880
Fax: 262-789-6977

Standard Occupational Classification

39-4031.00 - Morticians, Undertakers, and Funeral Directors
To learn more about this occupation search the Occupational Information Network (O*Net).


Fees stated and other information contained in this report are subject to change. Please contact the licensing authority listed above for the most current information.

This page was last updated on 2/13/19.

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