Kenneth Vercammen is a Middlesex County Trial Attorney who has published 130 articles in national and New Jersey publications on Criminal Law, Probate, Estate and litigation topics.

He was awarded the NJ State State Bar Municipal Court Practitioner of the Year.

He lectures and handles criminal cases, Municipal Court, DWI, traffic and other litigation matters.

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Kenneth Vercammen & Associates, P.C,

2053 Woodbridge Avenue,

Edison, NJ 08817,

(732) 572-0500

Friday, August 11, 2017

Transfer of interment space

45:27-28 Transfer of interment space,

45:27-28Transfer of interment space, niche.

28. a. When a cemetery transfers an interment space or niche and records the transfer, the person or persons to whom it was transferred become the owner of the interment space or niche. The conveyance issued by a cemetery shall indicate whether the cemetery company is transferring title to the interment space or niche or only a right of burial in it. The conveyance may:

(1) provide that the owner take title subject to existing and future reasonable regulations of the cemetery; and

(2) contain other reasonable restrictions on use or transfer consistent with this act.

b. Except as limited by subsection c. of this section, the owner of an interment space or an interest in one in a cemetery may transfer the space or interest to any person or to the cemetery company. Transfers may be made on agreed conditions, provided the conditions are recorded in the office of the cemetery company. The cemetery company shall record a cemetery transfer in its records when a document of transfer is presented to the cemetery company and any other requirements imposed by law or regulations of the cemetery company are met. The transfer shall be effective on recordation by the cemetery company.

c. After human remains have been buried in a grave or crypt, that grave or crypt shall not be transferred except as follows:

(1) Ownership of the grave or crypt may be transferred by will if it is identified specifically in the will rather than by a residuary clause or by general reference to real property. Otherwise, on the death of the owner, ownership shall descend in the order listed below:

(a) to the surviving spouse and the owners children, if any, per stirpes, as equal tenants in common;

(b) if there is no surviving spouse, to the children per stirpes as equal tenants in common;

(c) if there is no surviving spouse nor surviving children, then to the owners parents as equal tenants in common;

(d) if there is no surviving spouse, children or parents, then to the owners siblings as equal tenants in common;

(e) if there is no surviving spouse, children, parents or siblings, then ownership in the grave or crypt shall pass to the owners next of kin as tenants in common pursuant to the laws of intestacy;

(f) Notwithstanding subparagraphs (a) through (e) of this paragraph (1), if an owner dies leaving a surviving spouse, but having surviving children from a prior marriage or relationship, those children and the surviving spouse shall be owners of the grave or crypt as tenants in common.

(2) If the grave or crypt is owned by more than one person, one owners share may be transferred to another owner.

(3)Ownership of the grave or crypt may be transferred to any heir at law of the person buried in the  space.

(4) The owner may convey the grave or crypt in trust to a bank or trust company or to the cemetery company for the benefit of the owner of the grave or crypt and the protection of the human remains already buried in it, pursuant to the terms of the deed of trust. Acceptance of the conveyance in trust by the cemetery company shall require a majority vote of its governing board.

(5) If additional burials are permitted to be made in the grave or crypt, the grave or crypt may be transferred to allow for those burials.

d. A cemetery company shall maintain records of transfers of ownership of interment spaces. Records shall be kept in the manner specified by the board in its regulations. Records shall be indexed both by the number of each interment space and by the name of each owner.

45:27-29 Multiple owners of interment space.
29. a. When there are two or more owners of an interment space:

(1) each individual owners interest may be transferred only by that owner or that owners authorized representative;

(2) each individual owner has a right of interment in the space.

b. When there are two or more owners of an interment space, they may designate one or more of the co-owners to represent them by filing written notice of the designation with the cemetery company. If such a notice has been filed, the cemetery company shall follow the direction of the representative as to interment in the space, and in regard to memorials, embellishments and care for the interment space. In the absence of that notice the cemetery company may rely on the direction of any co-owner as to burial, memorials, embellishments or care and shall not be liable to any person for doing so.

45:27-30 Regulations on interment.
30. a. A cemetery company may adopt reasonable regulations on interment. In the absence of regulation, the cemetery company shall allow human remains of the following persons to be interred in an available interment space:

(1) deceased person who at the time of death was an owner of the interment space;

(2) the spouse of the deceased person who owned the interment space at the time of death; and

(3) any other person authorized by a written directive of the designated owner of the interment space as provided in subsection b. of section 29 of this act, or if there is no designated owner, by the written directive of any owner.

b. The right of a person to be interred in an interment space may be waived in writing. The right terminates if the person is interred elsewhere.

c. If more persons have a right to be interred in an interment space than may be interred there, any person with a right to interment in the interment space may be interred in it even though that will make the interment space unavailable to others.

d. A person who signs an authorization for the disposition of human remains warrants the truth of the facts stated, the identity of the human remains and the authority to order the disposition. The person shall be liable for damages caused by a false statement or breach of warranty. A cemetery or funeral director shall not be liable for disposition in accordance with the authorization unless it had reasonable notice that the representations were untrue or that the person lacked the right to control the disposition. An action against a cemetery company relating to the disposition of human remains left in its temporary custody shall not be brought more than one year from the date of delivery of the remains to the cemetery company unless otherwise provided by a written contract.