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Residency Requirements for Licensure

Upon graduation from the FSAD program and after achieving a minimum score of 75 on both the Arts and Science sections of the American Board of Funeral Service Examination, the student must complete and submit an application for a residency with the Bureau. The International Conference of Funeral Service Examination Boards will contact the Bureau with your test results. The Bureau will then generates an application and sends it to the last known address on file (Note: The student license address is the one on file with the Bureau of Funeral Directing. If this address has changed, you are responsible for notifying the Bureau in writing of the new address).

There is no fee associated with applying for your residency. However, in the 9th month of your residency, you will be required to send a fee of $125.00 to the Bureau. This is not a fee for the exam but rather for your license if you pass the state funeral directing law exam with a 75% or better score.

To become licensed as a funeral director in New York State:

  • The applicant must be a US citizen or an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residency in the US.
  • Completion of prescribed courses from an accredited mortuary science program approved by the Bureau.
  • The applicant must be of good moral character. Anyone convicted of a crime or who has committed an act which raised question as to his/her moral character will be subjected to review by the state. The department strongly encourages anyone with a prior felony conviction to contact the Bureau of Funeral Directing prior to applying for admission into the FSAD program. We would not want you to complete the coursework only to discover that you will be denied NYS licensure.
  • Applicants must serve a 12 month residency in a registered NYS funeral home and be supervised under a licensed NYS funeral director.
  • During the residency, the applicant must complete and handle 40 cases that demonstrate a professional competency in arrangements, embalming, funeral services, final disposition, and other matters relating to funeral directing.
  • Ten days prior to the end of each quarter during a residency, the applicant is required to send a report to the Bureau for review.
  •  There is a possibility that upon completion of the residency, the resident and/or manager (supervisor of the resident) may have to appear before the Bureau for an oral interview. In this event, the Bureau will provide instructions as to where and when to appear for the oral review.

More information regarding the laws that govern the practice of funeral directing, we recommend that the applicant obtain a copy of:

New York State Funeral Directors Assn. Manual of the New York State’s Laws and Regulations affecting funeral directing: A practical guide for funeral directors.

This manual can be obtained by contacting (a fee may apply):

New York State Funeral Directors Association
1 South Family Drive
Albany, NY 12205

p: 518-452-8230
toll free: 800-291-2629
fax: 518-452-8667

Other states have different requirements for licensure. We recommend that the student review state licensure requirements prior to beginning any mortuary science program.

Exam Results

Three Year Average of National Board Exam - 1st Time Pass Rate - 2021 Annual Report

Year Arts 1st Time Takers Passed Failed Pass Rate % NBE Average
2021 8 6 2 75% 68%
2020 13 8 5 62%  
2019 10 7 3 70%  
3-Year x 31 21 10 68%  
Year Science 1st Time Takers Passed Failed Pass Rate % NBE Average
2021 8 5 3 63% 57%
2020 11 7 4 64%  
2019 10 6 4 60%  
3-Year x 29 18 11 62%  

3-Year Employment and Graduation Rates

Year Total Enrolled # of New Students # of Grads Timely Grad Graduation Rate Did Not Finish % Employed* Employed in FS*
2021 70 20 4 3/8 38% 14 1 3
2020 71 28 22 3/3 100% 6 6 8
2019 67 12 13 5/6 83% 6 2 6

* Number of employed graduates who responded to Program Director regarding employment status

Funeral Services Administration
Program Director
David Penepent
(315) 386-7170