Missouri’s death care regulators will play host to their peers next week when the North American Death Care Regulators Association convention is held in St. Louis. When you host a convention in NPS’ backyard, the agenda needs to include sessions on what went wrong. The final session of the agenda will catch every regulator’s eye, but they should not overlook the Missouri Division of Finance session on Monday morning.
Missouri’s has two principal death care regulators: the State Board of Embalmers and Funeral Directors and the Office of Endowed Care Cemeteries. The stable of NPS related companies included one which owned and operated cemeteries in Missouri (and Illinois). So when NPS collapsed, the OECC had its own issues to deal with. But neither the OECC nor the State Board had/have jurisdiction over the NPS trustees. As the recent Wulf conviction suggests, NPS exploited the jurisdiction gaps between the death care regulators and the trustees’ regulators. But, the jurisdiction gap between death care regulator and the trustee regulator is a fairly common problem. When the Illinois Comptroller came under criticism a few years ago, one press release suggested that the IFDA master trust could be better regulated by the banking regulators.
Though not widely publicized, the Missouri death care regulators and trust regulators have been communicating. The Division of Finance session could provide the Missouri death care industry a glimpse of what role the DOF will play in the oversight of their preneed trusts and care fund trusts.