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Laws and regulations in Maryland are dictated by the Maryland General Assembly, following which laws can be found in several locations in the Annotated Code of Maryland. Many appropriate actions on behalf of burial grounds in Maryland are executed through the Office of Cemetery Oversight, a division of Maryland’s Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulations.

Business Regulations – Cemeteries

CEM_Disinterment_MD

Maryland Burial Law

Maryland Historical Trust – Historic Cemetery Preservation

Property owners planning to rehabilitate or alter a burial site in existence for more than 50 years are required by Maryland law to consult with the Maryland Historical Trust (MHT) for guidance on the proper treatment of grave markers, human remains, and the environment surrounding the burial site. See Md. Ann. Code, Real Property §§ 14-121, 14-121.1. To initiate the consultation process, please visit the MHT’s cemeteries website and complete the cemetery advice form

Office of Cemetery Oversight – Regulations

Sunset Review – Evaluation of the Office of Cemetery Oversight [PDF 14 MB]

Current Legislation

List of current cemetery legislation Bills [LINK]

Synopsis of Senate Bills and Joint Resolutions, 2024. [PDF]

HB1168 / SB1028: Human Remains – Alkaline Hydrolysis and Natural Organic Reduction (Green Death Care Options Act) [Details]
Establishing a regulatory system for reduction operators and reduction facilities; establishing requirements and prohibitions related to the performance of alkaline hydrolysis and natural organic reduction and the disposition of hydrolyzed or soil remains by certain facilities; prohibiting a person from using or disposing of soil remains produced by natural organic reduction in a certain manner, including by using the soil to grow food for consumption by humans or livestock; etc.
  • Health and Government Operations hearing 3/5/2024 [video]
HB0828 / SB0647: Abandoned Cemeteries Fund – Establishment and Income Tax Check Off [PDF] [Details]
This bill establishes the Abandoned Cemeteries Fund and the Abandoned Cemeteries Fund checkoff on the individual income tax return form. The purpose of the fund is to provide for the care, preservation, maintenance, and restoration of abandoned cemeteries in the State. By September 30 annually, the Secretary of Labor must report to the General Assembly on the administration of the fund. Provisions relating to the income tax checkoff take effect July 1, 2026, and apply to tax year 2026 and beyond.
  • Finance Committee hearing 2/16/2024 [video]
SB 224: Cemeteries – Burial Transit Permits – Required Information [PDF] [Details] [Votes]
This departmental bill requires the person in charge of a cemetery (which includes a crematory or other place for final disposition) to write the name and physical address of the cemetery on the burial-transit permit. In addition, the person in charge must also include on the burial-transit permit either (1) the burial, inurnment, or scattering section and the lot and space number or (2) if the body or fetus was cremated and an authorizing agent takes control of the cremains, the name and address of the authorizing agent and the authorizing agent’s relationship to the deceased or fetus.
  • Finance Committee hearing 1/24/2024 [video]
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