Michigan affiliate of the national Funeral Consumers Alliance

Michigan affiliate of the national Funeral Consumers Alliance








Chapter 128 Cemeteries, Statutes, 128.1-128.164

Chapter 456 Cemetery Associations, Statutes, 456.1-456.543

(includes Crematory Companies and Vault Associations)

Chapter 600 Organization and Jurisdiction of Courts

Administrative Code


Chapter 128 Cemeteries, Statutes, 128.1-128.164


Act 215 of 1937 Cemetery or Burial Grounds

(128.1 - 128.3)

Act 46 of 1931 Public Cemeteries

(128.11 - 128.16)

Act 49 of 1895 Vacating Cemetery in Township

(128.31 - 128.36)

Act 164 of 1871 Vacating Cemetery in City or Village

(128.41 - 128.45)

Act 297 of 1929 Vacating Cemetery in City or Village

(128.51 - 128.57)

Act 113 of 1915 Care of Cemeteries

(128.61 - 128.62)

Act 95 of 1909 Trust Fund for Care of Cemeteries

(128.71 - 128.74)

Act 81 of 1903 Care and Preservation of Cemetery Lots

(128.81 - 128.88)

Act 211 of 1911 Fencing of Private Cemeteries

(128.101 - 128.103)

Act 88 of 1875 Exemption of Private Burial Grounds From Taxation or Attachment

(128.111 - 128.112)

Act 22 of 1905 Memory Days

(128.121 - 128.121)

Act 272 of 1909 Enlargement of Township Burial Grounds

(128.151 - 128.164)



Chapter 456 Cemetery Associations, Statutes, 456.1-456.543


Act 87 of 1855 Cemetery Corporations

(456.1 - 456.36)

Act 185 of 1929 Cemetery Corporations; Extension of Corporate Life (456.51 - 456.52)

Act 12 of 1869 Rural Cemetery Corporations

(456.101 - 456.119)

Act 14 of 1903 Rural Cemetery Corporations; Extension of Corporate Life

(456.151 - 456.151)

Act 10 of 1927 Cemetery Corporations; Transfer of Rights to Municipal Corporation (456.181 - 456.184)

Act 58 of 1915 Cremation Companies (456.201 - 456.213)

Act 13 of 1882 Vault Associations (456.251 - 456.253)

Act 251 of 1968 Cemetery Regulation Act (456.521 - 456.543)


Chapter 600 Organization and Jurisdiction of Courts


Act 236 of 1961 Cemetery receivers and conservators; term; appointments;accounting; compensation and expenses. (600.2926a)


Administrative Code


Bureau of Commercial Services, Cemetery Commission General Rules




The Cemetery Commissioner within the Department of Energy, Labor & Economic Growth licenses cemeteries.


Statutory authority for the regulation of cemeteries is found in the Cemetery Regulation Act 1968 PA 251, MCL 456.521 et seq.


The Act requires the Cemetery Commissioner to audit cemetery trust funds, approve cemetery ownership changes, investigate applications for new cemeteries, and investigate complaints from the public regarding cemeteries.


Cemeteries owned and operated by a municipality, church or religious institutions are exempt from the Act.


If you have questions or wish to file a complaint, contact the Office of the Cemetery Commissioner:



(866) 913-3534

e-Mail: bcscemeteries@michigan.gov


Learn More!

Download these free pamphlets:


How to File a Funeral or Cemetery Complaint

Earth Burial: A tradition in simplicity




The Federal Trade Commission Funeral Rule does not cover cemeteries and mausoleums unless they sell both funeral goods and funeral services. Before making your purchase, make sure you have and understand all the pertinent information, prices and fees.


In addition to the cost of the plot, you may be required to purchase the following goods and services:


Grave Liners and Vaults


For lawn-maintainance purposes, most conventional cemeteries require the purchase of a grave liner or vault to prevent the gravesite from sinking. These items cost several hundred dollars. Ask if they allow you to purchase these items from a third party.


Opening and Closing of the Grave


The digging (opening) and filling (closing) of a grave is usually an additional charge. This service typically costs hundreds of dollars.


Perpetual Care


Perpetual care may or may not be included in the plot's price. If not, ask if there is an endowment care fee for maintenance and groundskeeping. Also inquire if flowers or other remembrances may be placed on graves.


Monuments and Grave Markers


Monuments and grave markers, as well as their installation, are typically additional costs. Ask if markers are required, and what type of monuments or memorials are allowed. Ask if they allow you to purchase these items from a third party.


Mausoleum or Columbarium


If you plan to place remains in a mausoleum or columbarium, expect to purchase a crypt and pay opening and closing fees as well as charges for endowment care and other services.


Information Source: Federal Trade Commission



All veterans are entitled to a free burial in a national cemetery and a grave marker. Spouses and dependent children also are entitled to a lot and marker when buried in a national cemetery. This eligibility also extends to some civilians who have provided military-related service and some Public Health Service personnel.


There are no charges for opening or closing the grave, for a vault or grave liner, or for setting the marker in a national cemetery. The family generally is responsible for other expenses, including transportation.


The Department of Veterans Affairs’ National Cemetery Administration maintains 131 national cemeteries in 39 states and Puerto Rico as well as 33 soldier’s lots and monument sites.


For more information, click to the Federal Benefits for Veterans, Dependents and Survivors 2010 Edition, visit the Department of Veterans Affairs' Web site, or call (800) 827-1000.


Important Note: The FTC urges consumers to beware of commercial cemeteries that advertise "veterans' specials." These cemeteries sometimes offer a free plot for the veteran, but they might charge exorbitant rates for an adjoining plot for the spouse as well as high fees for opening and closing each grave.


Learn More!

Download these free pamphlets:


Veterans' Funeral & Burial Benefits


Federal Benefits for Veterans, Dependents and Survivors 2010 Edition


National Veterans' Cemeteries:


Fort Custer Nat'l Cemetery

15501 Dickman Road

Augusta, MI 49012

(269) 731-4164


Fort Mackinac Post Cemetery

Mackinac State Park

Mackinac Island, MI 49757


Great Lakes National Cemetery

4200 Belford Road

Holly, MI 48442

(866) 348-8603


Lakeside Cemetery

Soldiers' Lot

3781 Gratiot Street

Port Huron, MI 48060


Grand Rapids Home for Veterans Cemetery

(owned by the state of Michigan)

3000 Monroe, NW

Grand Rapids, MI 49505

Jack Devine, Director


(Not a VA-Grant-Funded Cemetery)




COPYRIGHT © 2014 Funeral Consumers Information Society of Michigan



Funeral Consumers Information Society, also known as FCIS, is a volunteer-run nonprofit  dedicated to helping Michiganians make dignified, meaningful and affordable funeral arrangements since 1961.


In 2006, our mission expanded to advocate for the re-establishment of family rights in after-death care, including family-led home funerals, and to foster sustainable environmental practices, such as green burial, in the state.