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Local funeral home director accused of operating without license, mismanaging pre-paid funds

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WESTFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The 22News I-Team discovered a former funeral home director in Westfield has permanently surrendered his funeral directing license, after being accused of several violations that range from unlicensed practice to mismanaging money.

The I-Team started investigating the former Robert E. Cusack Funeral Home, after families complained to us that the funeral home abruptly shut down and after they had already pre-paid for funeral expenses.

The Attorney General’s office confirmed that eight people have filed complaints against the most recent funeral home director, Thomas F. Cusack.

All of those complaints were related to pre-paid funeral expenses.

The I-Team obtained records from the Division of Professional Licensure, that show Cusack voluntarily surrendered his funeral directing and embalming license to the state permanently in October of 2017.

As a result of that, Robert E. Cusack Funeral Home was shut down.

The I-Team obtained a copy of the Voluntary Surrender Agreement that Cusack had signed with the Board of Registration in Embalming and Funeral Directing in 2017. According to those documents, he hasn’t had a Directing and Embalming License in Massachusetts since his license expired in October of 2010.

The document goes on to say that Cusack entered into the agreement with the state for “actions which place into question (his) competence to practice in the funeral directing and embalming profession.”

The state describes those actions as “unlicensed practice in the funeral directing and embalming profession, and failing to properly deposit and/or manage pre-need funeral funds placed into your care.”

It doesn’t specify when or how long Cusack may have been practicing without a license for, but did say his license expired in 2010, and the agreement with the state wasn’t signed until 2017.

The Board of Professional Licensure told the I-Team as part of the agreement, Cusack is required to tell his customers of any changes, cancellations, or transfers of funeral contracts and arrangements they had with the Thomas E. Cusack Funeral Home.

The Division of Professional Licensure said some of the pre-need arrangements have been transferred to Firtion-Adams Funeral Home in Westfield.

The state is encouraging any consumers who believe they may have pre-paid for funeral arrangements with the Robert E. Cusack Funeral Home, to contact the DPL’s Office of Investigations.

The I-Team attempted to call Cusack’s last listed phone number and go to his last listed address, but were unable to reach him.

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