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34-27 CEMETERIES AND BURIAL RECORDS
CHAPTER 34-27

CEMETERIES AND BURIAL RECORDS

34-27-1 to 34-27-3. Repealed.
34-27-4      Superseded.
34-27-5      Racial discrimination in cemetery as petty offense--Restrictive covenants void--Immunity from liability for damages.
34-27-6      Burial record book required of cemetery--Indexes--Ownership records--Official inspection.
34-27-7      Purpose of requirements as to cemetery plats.
34-27-8      Subdivision and platting of cemeteries required--Filing with local registrar of vital records.
34-27-9      Numbering of grave spaces on cemetery plat--Designation of veterans' burials--Marking of burials.
34-27-10      Cemetery plats received by local registrar--Posting when burial permit issued.
34-27-11      Card-index records of burials maintained by local registrar--Contents.
34-27-12      Supervision of burial record system by Department of Health--Enforcement powers.
34-27-13      Filing by local registrars of data from graves registration survey project--Fees not receivable.
34-27-14      Violation or failure to maintain records as misdemeanor.
34-27-15      Duty of reinterment when cemetery removed--Punishment for omission of duty.
34-27-16      Liability for expense of reinterment on removal of cemetery.
34-27-17      Punishment for omission to reinter when cemetery removed.
34-27-18      Opening grave or breaking building with intent to remove body or coffin as misdemeanor.
34-27-19      Removing dead body maliciously or with intent to sell or dissect as misdemeanor.
34-27-20      Receiving dead body unlawfully removed as misdemeanor.
34-27-21      Definition of terms.
34-27-22      Buying, selling, or bartering human skeletal remains or funerary objects as felony.
34-27-23      Repealed.
34-27-24      Commercial display of human skeletal remains or funerary objects as felony.
34-27-25      Reporting discovery of human skeletal remains--Failure to report as misdemeanor.
34-27-26      Disturbing human skeletal remains or funerary objects as felony.
34-27-27      Repealed.
34-27-28      Notification to landowner and coroner--Notification to state archaeologist and tribal officials--Time limits.
34-27-29      Repealed.
34-27-30      Rules promulgated by State Historical Society Board of Trustees.
34-27-31      Discovery of human remains or funerary objects by state educational institution or museum--Contact state archaeologist--Notice to tribal officials--Tribal request--Disposition of remains or objects.
34-27-32      Refusal to turn over remains or objects to tribal group--Appeal.
34-27-33      Confidentiality of archaeological records pertaining to location of unmarked burials and other human remains--Exceptions.


34-27-1 Repealed by SL 2012, ch 177, §§ 35 to 37.
     34-27-1 to 34-27-3.   Repealed by SL 2012, ch 177, §§ 35 to 37.


34-27-4 Superseded.
     34-27-4.   Superseded.


34-27-5 Racial discrimination in cemetery as petty offense--Restrictive covenants void--Immunity f...
     34-27-5.   Racial discrimination in cemetery as petty offense--Restrictive covenants void--Immunity from liability for damages. It is a petty offense for any organization subject to the provisions of chapter 55-12 to deny the privilege of interment of the remains of any deceased person in any cemetery described in § 55-12-1 solely because of the race or color of such deceased person. Any contract, agreement, deed, covenant, restriction, or charter provision at any time entered into, or bylaw, rule, or regulation adopted or put in force, either subsequent or prior to the effective date of this chapter, authorizing, permitting, or requiring any organization subject to the provisions of chapter 55-12 to deny such privilege of interment because of race or color of such deceased person is hereby declared to be null and void and in conflict with the public policy of this state. No organization subject to the provisions of chapter 55-12 or any director, officer, agent, employee, or trustee thereof or therefor, shall be liable for damages or other relief, or be subjected to any action in any court otherwise having jurisdiction in the premises by reason of refusing to commit any act prohibited by this section.

Source: SL 1955, ch 97, §§ 8, 9; SDC Supp 1960, §§ 11.19A08, 11.9902; SL 1977, ch 190, § 71.


34-27-6 Burial record book required of cemetery--Indexes--Ownership records--Official inspection.
     34-27-6.   Burial record book required of cemetery--Indexes--Ownership records--Official inspection. All copies of burial or removal permits shall be retained by the person in charge of any cemetery, or place of burial, and filed by him as a permanent record of such cemetery, and he shall forthwith make an exact copy of each burial or removal permit in a "burial record book," together with such additional information as may be prescribed by the secretary of health; such "burial record book" shall contain an alphabetical index, listing by name, all deceased persons interred or buried in the cemetery. Such cemetery burial record shall also provide a numerical or tract index, to be maintained by designating and numbering consecutively, each burial or removal permit, such permit number to be marked or noted on the individual grave space upon the cemetery plat or map, wherein such interment is or was made. Such person or cemetery officials shall also keep and maintain as a permanent record, the name and address of all grantees and a description of each cemetery subdivision, lot, or grave space, to whom such title has been conveyed or where certain areas have been reserved for special purposes. All such burial records together with the cemetery plat or map, shall at all times be open to official inspection.

Source: SL 1931, ch 267, § 10; SDC 1939, § 27.0214; SL 1941, ch 124, § 4; SDC Supp 1960, § 27.0214 (2).


34-27-7 Purpose of requirements as to cemetery plats.
     34-27-7.   Purpose of requirements as to cemetery plats. It is the intent and purpose of §§ 34-27-8 and 34-27-9 to require every cemetery or place of burial to be platted or mapped into subdivisions, indicating individual grave spaces, thereby providing when such plat or map is placed on file in the registrar's office, a numerical or tract index of all burials recorded and for no other purpose.

Source: SDC 1939, § 27.0214 (1) as added by SL 1941, ch 124, § 4.


34-27-8 Subdivision and platting of cemeteries required--Filing with local registrar of vital reco...
     34-27-8.   Subdivision and platting of cemeteries required--Filing with local registrar of vital records. Every person, firm, or association, every church, religious or benevolent society, and private or public corporation, owning or having under his or its control, any cemetery or place of burial in this state, shall keep and maintain a uniform record of all burials, and shall by itself, his or its officers or agent, cause such cemetery or burial ground, or such portion thereof as may from time to time become necessary for that purpose, to be surveyed, mapped, or diagramed, and subdivided into sections, blocks, lots, individual grave spaces, avenues, walks, and streets, thereby platting or making a map or diagram thereof, which map or plat shall be filed, preserved, and maintained as a permanent cemetery record. Such plat or map, or copy thereof, shall be dated and endorsed by the person, firm, or agency drafting such plat or map, and duly filed in the office of the registrar of vital records of the registration district, wherein located, and shall become a permanent record in such office.

Source: SDC 1939, § 27.0214 (1) as added by SL 1941, ch 124, § 4.


34-27-9 Numbering of grave spaces on cemetery plat--Designation of veterans' burials--Marking of b...
     34-27-9.   Numbering of grave spaces on cemetery plat--Designation of veterans' burials--Marking of burials. Each section, block, lot, and individual grave space in a cemetery shall be regularly numbered, such numbers to appear and be marked upon the face thereof, and the map or plat required by § 34-27-8 when completed shall have designated thereon, by uniform marking appearing in the proper grave spaces, all present burials and occupied graves located within such cemetery. The graves of all veterans of the armed forces of the United States, including their allies, confederate veterans, and war nurses in the time of war, and veterans as defined by § 33A-2-1, located in each cemetery shall be designated by a separate and distinct uniform mark. Thereafter it shall be the duty of such person, association, or corporation in charge of such cemetery or place of burial to regularly mark and designate upon such plat or map, the exact grave space occupied at the time of interment, by all subsequent burials, within such cemetery.

Source: SDC 1939, § 27.0214 (1) as added by SL 1941, ch 124, § 4; SL 2011, ch 1 (Ex. Ord. 11-1), § 20, eff. Apr. 12, 2011.


34-27-10 Cemetery plats received by local registrar--Posting when burial permit issued.
     34-27-10.   Cemetery plats received by local registrar--Posting when burial permit issued. The local registrar of vital records shall receive and file as a permanent record, the plat or map, or copy thereof, of each cemetery within his district as provided in this chapter; thereafter it shall be the duty of such registrar to regularly mark and designate upon each plat or map, the exact grave space of all subsequent burials within such cemetery, by using a uniform mark for all burials, a distinguishing and separate mark for the graves of veterans, and by inserting in such grave space, the burial or removal permit number, assigned to such burial at time of filing permit.

Source: SDC 1939, § 27.0217 as added by SL 1941, ch 124, § 6; SL 1945, ch 105.


34-27-11 Card-index records of burials maintained by local registrar--Contents.
     34-27-11.   Card-index records of burials maintained by local registrar--Contents. The local registrar of vital records shall provide and maintain for all burials within his district a card-index file, alphabetical by name of deceased and under cemetery name, such card-index record to be maintained on 3x5 cards, each bearing the following information: name of cemetery, burial or removal permit number, name of deceased person, date of death, date of burial, veteran or nonveteran, location of burial by cemetery section number, block, lot, and grave number, date of filing, and book and page number wherein such permit is recorded. The registrar in maintaining such card-index record, shall use a white or buff colored card for the recording of each nonveteran and a blue or cherry colored card for recording each veteran's burial, for ready reference.

Source: SDC 1939, § 27.0217 as added by SL 1941, ch 124, § 6; SL 1945, ch 105.


34-27-12 Supervision of burial record system by Department of Health--Enforcement powers.
     34-27-12.   Supervision of burial record system by Department of Health--Enforcement powers. For the purpose of locating the exact grave or burial space and the compiling and maintenance of an adequate and uniform burial-record system of the burials of all deceased persons, now located, together with all subsequent burials, within all cemeteries in the State of South Dakota, including the graves of veterans of the armed forces of the United States, including the allies, confederate veterans, and war nurses in the time of war and veterans as defined by § 33A-2-1, and making available such records for reporting to the United States government under the provisions of the federal laws, respecting the erection of government headstones at the graves of such veterans or war nurses of the Army of the United States, the Department of Health shall have charge of and shall supervise the registration of all burials in each registration district, and shall prepare the necessary instructions for obtaining, preserving as a permanent record, and maintaining the registration of all burials, by the registrar of each registration district, and by all individuals, associations, churches, religious and benevolent societies, and all public or private corporations, within this state, having under their care or control any cemetery or place of burial. The said department shall be charged with the uniform and thorough enforcement of the law throughout the state and the Department of Health shall from time to time, in compliance with chapter 1-26, make such rules and regulations, not inconsistent with the laws of this state, necessary for the carrying out of such registration.

Source: SL 1931, ch 267, § 1; SDC 1939, § 27.0201; SL 1941, ch 124, § 1; SL 1945, ch 103, § 1; SL 1972, ch 15, § 4; SL 2011, ch 1 (Ex. Ord. 11-1), § 20, eff. Apr. 12, 2011.


34-27-13 Filing by local registrars of data from graves registration survey project--Fees not recei...
     34-27-13.   Filing by local registrars of data from graves registration survey project--Fees not receivable. The local registrar of each registration district within the state is hereby authorized to receive and file in his office as a permanent record any information or data, pertaining to burials within his registration district, compiled by the "graves registration survey project," a state-wide survey, sponsored by the South Dakota Military Department through the cooperating sponsorship of the American Legion and under the works projects administration of South Dakota, together with maps or drawings of cemeteries in such district, to the end that said registrar with the cooperation of the graves registration survey project, may use such information or data in completing and bringing up to date, burial records as to all past burials; it is the intent and purpose of this chapter that all burials and all information pertaining thereto, including those of veterans who served in the military or naval forces of the United States in the time of war and those of veterans as defined by § 33A-2-1, buried within this state, be placed on record and hereafter maintained therein as a permanent record; providing such information with reference to past burials in compiled and cemetery maps drafted and presented for filing, is without additional expense to the State of South Dakota. No registrar shall receive any fee for filing or recording such compiled burial information or cemetery map or maps.

Source: SDC 1939, § 27.0216 as added by SL 1941, ch 124, § 5; SL 2011, ch 1 (Ex. Ord. 11-1), § 20, eff. Apr. 12, 2011.


34-27-14 Violation or failure to maintain records as misdemeanor.
     34-27-14.   Violation or failure to maintain records as misdemeanor. Any person, officer, agent, or employee of any other person or of any corporation or partnership who shall:
             (1)      Refuse or fail to furnish correctly any information in his possession or shall furnish false information affecting any certificate or record required by this chapter;
             (2)      Intentionally alter, otherwise than as provided by § 34-25-51, or falsify any record required by this chapter; or
             (3)      Being a person, firm, association, church, religious or benevolent society, or corporation, or an employee, officer, or agent thereof, owning or having under his or its control, any cemetery or place of burial, fail, neglect, or refuse to keep and maintain the record of burials as required by this chapter;
is guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.

Source: SL 1931, ch 267, § 21; SDC 1939, § 27.9902; SL 1941, ch 124, § 8; SL 1977, ch 190, § 72.


34-27-15 Duty of reinterment when cemetery removed--Punishment for omission of duty.
     34-27-15.   Duty of reinterment when cemetery removed--Punishment for omission of duty. Whenever a cemetery or other place of burial is lawfully authorized to be removed from one place to another the right and duty to disinter, remove, and rebury the remains of bodies there lying buried devolves upon the persons named in §§ 34-26-16 and 34-26-17 in the order in which they are named, and if they all fail to act, then upon the lawful custodians of the place of burial so removed. Every omission of such duty is punishable in the same manner as omissions are made punishable by § 34-26-18 to perform the duty of making burial.

Source: PenC 1877, § 361; CL 1887, § 6562; RPenC 1903, § 366; RC 1919, § 3880; SDC 1939, § 27.1305.


34-27-16 Liability for expense of reinterment on removal of cemetery.
     34-27-16.   Liability for expense of reinterment on removal of cemetery. The expense of removal pursuant to § 34-27-15 shall be paid by the person for whose benefit or upon whose complaint or petition it was made, before any order for such removal is made, with the right of such person to recover such expense from the estate of the decedent or persons legally chargeable with his burial expense if it appears that such removal was ordered as a matter of legal right instead of for the accommodation of the applicant for such order.

Source: SDC 1939, § 27.1305.


34-27-17 Punishment for omission to reinter when cemetery removed.
     34-27-17.   Punishment for omission to reinter when cemetery removed. Every omission of duty to disinter, remove, and rebury the remains of bodies in cemeteries or other places of burial when such removal has been lawfully authorized, is punishable in the same manner as omission to perform the duty of making burial is punished under the provisions of § 34-26-18.

Source: PenC 1877, § 361; CL 1887, § 6562; RPenC 1903, § 366; RC 1919, § 3880; SDC 1939, § 13.1416.


34-27-18 Opening grave or breaking building with intent to remove body or coffin as misdemeanor.
     34-27-18.   Opening grave or breaking building with intent to remove body or coffin as misdemeanor. Every person who opens any grave or any place of burial, temporary or otherwise, or who breaks open any building wherein any dead body of a human being is deposited while awaiting burial, with intent either:
             (1)      To remove any dead body of a human being for the purpose of selling the same or for the purpose of dissection; or
             (2)      To steal the coffin, or any part thereof, or anything attached thereto or connected therewith, or the vestments or other articles buried with the same;
is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

Source: PenC 1877, § 360; CL 1887, § 6561; RPenC 1903, § 365; RC 1919, § 3879; SDC 1939, § 13.1422; SL 1977, ch 190, § 73.


34-27-19 Removing dead body maliciously or with intent to sell or dissect as misdemeanor.
     34-27-19.   Removing dead body maliciously or with intent to sell or dissect as misdemeanor. Every person who removes all or any part of the dead body of a human being from any grave or other place where the same has been buried, or from any place where the same is deposited while awaiting burial, with intent to sell the same or to dissect it without authority of law, or from malice or wantonness, is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

Source: PenC 1877, § 358; CL 1887, § 6559; RPenC 1903, § 363; RC 1919, § 3877; SDC 1939, § 13.1418; SL 1977, ch 190, § 74.


34-27-20 Receiving dead body unlawfully removed as misdemeanor.
     34-27-20.   Receiving dead body unlawfully removed as misdemeanor. Every person who purchases or receives, except for the purpose of burial, any dead body of a human being, knowing that the same has been removed contrary to § 34-27-19, is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

Source: PenC 1877, § 359; CL 1887, § 6560; RPenC 1903, § 364; RC 1919, § 3878; SDC 1939, § 13.1419; SL 1977, ch 190, § 75.


34-27-21 Definition of terms.
     34-27-21.   Definition of terms. Terms used in §§ 34-27-21 to 34-27-30, inclusive, mean:
             (1)      "Human skeletal remains," the bones of a human being;
             (2)      "Funerary object," any artifact or object which was intentionally placed with a deceased person, either at the time of burial or interment or at some subsequent time, and which is reasonably associated with human remains subject to §§ 34-27-21 to 34-27-30, inclusive, or has been identified, through available evidence, as having been removed from a specific burial site in South Dakota;
             (3)      "State archaeologist," the individual of this title employed by the South Dakota State Historical Society;
             (4)      "Tribal group," a federally recognized Indian tribe.

Source: SL 1990, ch 6, § 1; SL 1991, ch 281, § 1.


34-27-22 Buying, selling, or bartering human skeletal remains or funerary objects as felony.
     34-27-22.   Buying, selling, or bartering human skeletal remains or funerary objects as felony. No person may knowingly buy, sell, or barter for profit human skeletal remains or associated funerary objects, previously buried within this state. A violation of this section is a Class 6 felony.

Source: SL 1990, ch 6, § 2.


34-27-23
     34-27-23.   Repealed by SL 1991, ch 281, § 2.


34-27-24 Commercial display of human skeletal remains or funerary objects as felony.
     34-27-24.   Commercial display of human skeletal remains or funerary objects as felony. No person may knowingly display funerary objects or human skeletal remains previously buried in South Dakota for profit or to aid and abet a commercial enterprise. A violation of this section is a Class 6 felony.

Source: SL 1990, ch 6, § 4.


34-27-25 Reporting discovery of human skeletal remains--Failure to report as misdemeanor.
     34-27-25.   Reporting discovery of human skeletal remains--Failure to report as misdemeanor. Any person who encounters or discovers human skeletal remains or what he believes may be human skeletal remains in or on the ground shall immediately cease any activity which may disturb those remains and shall report the presence and location of such human skeletal remains to an appropriate law enforcement officer. Willful failure to report the presence or discovery of human skeletal remains or what may be human skeletal remains within forty-eight hours to an appropriate law enforcement officer in the county in which the remains are found is a Class 2 misdemeanor.

Source: SL 1990, ch 6, § 5.


34-27-26 Disturbing human skeletal remains or funerary objects as felony.
     34-27-26.   Disturbing human skeletal remains or funerary objects as felony. No person unless authorized by the state archaeologist may knowingly disturb or knowingly permit disturbance of human skeletal remains or funerary objects except a law enforcement officer or coroner or other official designated by law in performance of official duties. A violation of this section is a Class 6 felony.

Source: SL 1990, ch 6, § 6.


34-27-27
     34-27-27.   Repealed by SL 1991, ch 281, § 3.


34-27-28 Notification to landowner and coroner--Notification to state archaeologist and tribal offi...
     34-27-28.   Notification to landowner and coroner--Notification to state archaeologist and tribal officials--Time limits. If a law enforcement officer has reason to believe that the skeletal remains, reported pursuant to § 34-27-25, may be human, he shall promptly notify the landowner and the coroner. If the remains reported under § 34-27-25 are not associated with or suspected of association with any crime, the state archaeologist shall be notified within fifteen days. The state archaeologist shall thereupon follow the procedure set out in § 34-27-31, except that the skeletal remains shall be turned over to the attorney general or any state's attorney should either request the remains for further investigation.

Source: SL 1990, ch 6, § 8; SL 1991, ch 281, § 3C.


34-27-29
     34-27-29.   Repealed by SL 1991, ch 281, § 3D.


34-27-30 Rules promulgated by State Historical Society Board of Trustees.
     34-27-30.   Rules promulgated by State Historical Society Board of Trustees. The State Historical Society Board of Trustees shall promulgate rules pursuant to chapter 1-26:
             (1)      To establish the persons who may be authorized by the state archaeologist to disturb human skeletal remains and funerary objects and the restrictions under which such persons shall operate; and
             (2)      To establish procedures to be followed by the state archaeologist in the final disposition of human skeletal remains and funerary objects under § 34-27-31.

Source: SL 1990, ch 6, § 10; SL 1991, ch 281, § 3E.


34-27-31 Discovery of human remains or funerary objects by state educational institution or museum-...
     34-27-31.   Discovery of human remains or funerary objects by state educational institution or museum--Contact state archaeologist--Notice to tribal officials--Tribal request--Disposition of remains or objects. If any state supported educational institution or state supported museum comes into possession of human skeletal remains or associated funerary objects from South Dakota following July 1, 1990, the institution or museum shall contact the state archaeologist within fifteen days of the find. Within a reasonable period of time from contact by the institution or museum, but not to exceed one year, the state archaeologist shall identify the remains or objects. If review by the state archaeologist demonstrates to his satisfaction that the remains or objects are not directly related to a tribal group, the state archaeologist is responsible for their final disposition after consultation with the director of the State Office of History. If review by the state archaeologist demonstrates to his satisfaction that there is a direct relationship of the remains or objects to a tribal group, the state archaeologist shall notify the director of the State Office of History and shall initiate contact with officials of that tribal group as designated by the Office of Indian Affairs. If, within one year of the first contact with the tribal group as set forth in this section, the tribal group requests return of the remains or objects, the state archaeologist shall turn over to the tribal group the remains or objects. If, within one year of the first contact with the tribal group as set forth in this section, the tribal group has not requested the return of the remains or objects, the state archaeologist is responsible for their final disposition after consultation with the director of the State Office of History.

Source: SL 1991, ch 281, § 3A.


34-27-32 Refusal to turn over remains or objects to tribal group--Appeal.
     34-27-32.   Refusal to turn over remains or objects to tribal group--Appeal. Any refusal by the state archaeologist to turn over remains or objects to a tribal group after a request is made under § 34-27-31 is reviewable as final agency action under chapter 1-26. Any such appeal must be filed within thirty days of written notice of the refusal to the tribal group.

Source: SL 1991, ch 281, § 3B.


34-27-33 Confidentiality of archaeological records pertaining to location of unmarked burials and o...
     34-27-33.   Confidentiality of archaeological records pertaining to location of unmarked burials and other human remains--Exceptions. Any record maintained pursuant to § 1-20-21 pertaining to the location of unmarked burials and other human remains shall remain confidential to protect the integrity of unmarked burials, human skeletal remains, and associated funerary objects. The state archaeologist may make the information from the records of such a site available to any agency of state government and any political subdivision of the state or to any tribe, which, in the opinion of the state archaeologist, may conduct activities that affect any such burial or human remains. The state archaeologist shall also make the information from the records of such a site available to the owner of the land that is such a site and may make the information available to any qualified researcher or research entity.

Source: SL 2007, ch 6, § 3.


Title 34

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