Ontario's Board of Funeral Services (BOFS) consents to strict conditions to permit re-opening of funeral homes pending hearing to revoke funeral licences

TORONTO, Jan. 17, 2014 /CNW/ - On January 16, 2014 the Licence Appeal Tribunal issued consent orders lifting the suspensions of the funeral establishment licences granted to Benisasia Funeral Home Inc., operating at 3263 Derry Road East, Mississauga, Ontario, and Benisasia Funeral Home Inc., Queen Street Chapel, operating at 1357 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario.

The consent orders provide for strict conditions, including the following:

  • The appointment of a Monitor to oversee the running of the business and its books and records, weekly visits to the funeral establishments and reports to the BOFS and establishment's owner;

  • The cost of the Monitor will be paid by the funeral establishments;

  • Rick Benisasia and the owner of the funeral establishments, Jyoti Johal, shall not have direct or indirect involvement in the management of the establishments or access to the two establishments except three times per month in the presence of the Monitor.

Full text of the consent orders may be found on the BOFS website at: www.funeralboard.com.

The orders mean that the funeral homes may provide funeral services pending the release by the Tribunal of its decision following a full hearing of the appeal of the Registrar's proposals to revoke the funeral establishment licences.  A date for the appeal hearing has yet to be set.

"The Board of Funeral Services agreed to the terms and conditions of these orders because we are satisfied that they provide sufficient protection for the public pending the outcome of the Tribunal Hearing on the main issue of the proposal to revoke the licences," said BOFS Registrar Doug Simpson.

"These orders provide management oversight for the public and ensure the funeral homes operate to the required standards of the profession and the Board of Funeral Services," Simpson said.

The BOFS suspended the funeral home licences on January 6, 2014 and gave notice of its intent to revoke the licences after a lengthy investigation into the practices of the two funeral homes. The BOFS outlined its reasons for the actions in a Notice of Proposal under the Funeral, Burial and Cremation Services Act (2002) the details of which are also posted on the BOFS website. The BOFS also retained all cremated remains seized from the two establishments and all prepaid contracts.  Any member of the public that has a prepaid contract with the Benisasia Funeral Homes, or has cremated remains under the care of the Benisasia Funeral Homes should contact the BOFS at:

Toll Free: 1-800-387-4458
Facsimile 416-979-0384

Ontario has 581 funeral establishments served by 2,775 funeral directors. The Board of Funeral Services was enacted by legislation and is the governing body that regulates the practices of funeral directors, funeral service establishments and related services to protect the interest of Ontario consumers.

SOURCE: Board of Funeral Services

For further information:

Doug Simpson, BOFS Registrar

Board of Funeral Services
2810-777 Bay Street, Box 117
Toronto, ON  M5G 2C8
Toll Free: 1-800-387-4458
Facsimile 416-979-0384

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