Learn about the requirements for funeral director internships in Washington state.
Who needs to complete an internship?
To become a funeral director, you must complete 1 year of intern training under the supervision of a funeral director licensed in Washington State.
Internships must not be longer than 5 years. The training must:
- Consist of at least 1,800 hours of employment, and
- Include assisting in coordinating all aspects of at least 25 arrangements for funeral, memorial, and/or final disposition services for human remains
If you served an internship in another state, we may accept your internship when you apply for a funeral director license if:
- You were registered with that state's board
- The supervising licensed funeral director or embalmer documented your training
If you have less than 1 year of combined internship and experience as a licensed funeral director in another state, you must serve a period of internship in Washington to make up the difference to a total of 1 year before we will grant your funeral director license.
How to apply for and document your internship
There are no required exams to become a funeral director intern, but you must pass the required exams before we will grant your funeral director license.
1. Submit your application
Choose the application method that works best for you. You'll pay the internship application fee when you apply.
Submit your application online
Submit your application by mail
Mail a completed Funeral Director/Embalmer Intern Application (only available in English) with a check or money order for the application fee (payable to the Department of Licensing) to:
Funeral and Cemetery Licensing
Department of Licensing
PO Box 3777
Seattle, WA 98124-3777
2. Report your internship activities
Every 3 months during your internship, you must submit a Funeral Director Intern Training Report (only available in English) listing the activities you've completed toward your internship. We recommend you keep a copy of your training reports for your records.
Qualifying internship activities
- Receiving initial notification of death
- Removing remains from place of death
- Wearing protective clothing/observe universal precautions
- Obtaining the identity of remains/place identification on remains
- Complying with embalming/refrigeration regulations
- Observing funeral arrangements
- Conducting arrangement conference
- Gathering vital statistic information
- Composing obituary/death notices
- Obtaining authorizations for embalming, cremation, release etc
- Obtaining burial transit permit
- Completing the Statement of Funeral Goods and Services Selected
- Planning and coordinating service and disposition details
- Presenting and explaining a general price list
- Presenting and explaining a casket price list
- Presenting and explaining an outer burial container price list
- Determining financial responsibility
- Documenting and removing personal effects
- Completing and filing a death certificate
- Obtaining certified copies of a death certificate
- Explaining FTC requirements
- Explaining Social Security and VA benefits
- Assisting with visitation
- Assisting with funeral/memorial or graveside service
- Receiving and arranging flowers
- Viewing room set-up
- Making disposition arrangements
- Maintaining appropriate licensing
- Maintaining confidentiality of information
- Coordinating funeral service participants (clergy, military, etc.)
- Preparing and presenting honorariums/gratuities
- Concluding a service and dismissing attendees
- Arranging casket/urn settings
- Confirming identity of decedent prior to disposition
- Completing disposition of cremated human remains
3. Keep your sponsor up to date
It's important to make sure your internship sponsor is up to date in our records. Choose the method that works best for you.
Update your sponsor online
Update your sponsor by email
Email us the necessary updates at email@example.com.
Update your sponsor by mail
Complete a Funeral Director/Embalmer Intern Application form and submit it to us before you change sponsors to avoid losing training credit.
Department of Licensing
PO Box 9012
Olympia, WA 98507-9012
Taking the licensing exam
You may take the funeral director licensing exams before finishing your intern training. However, we won't issue your license until after we receive certification that you have completed your intern training. Learn more about the funeral director licensing exam.