How to tell if someone is dead

Use the web to see if and when someone died

How to tell if someone is dead

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What to Know

  • Check online obituaries, social media, search engines, or the website of the place of worship.
  • Consult genealogy websites. You’ll be able to view their death date if they’re included in an updated family tree.
  • Use a people finder search engine. It may display the person’s death date along with basic biographical information.

Finding out if someone has died can be difficult in more ways than one. You can utilize a number of online websites to see if and when someone passed away.

How to Find Out if Someone Has Died

Discovering whether someone is deceased is relatively easy because there are usually public announcements posted on obituaries and websites. However, what you likely won’t find for most people is how the person died—that information is usually only circulated by word of mouth.

Read through online obituaries. A report covering the death is the first place you should look to see if someone has passed away. There are websites for both recent obituaries and historical ones.

An online obituary finder may be more useful in big cities. A small town might not post the obituary online, in which case you should check the local newspaper or the website for the mortuary.

How to tell if someone is dead

Social media should be your next choice. If you can find a social media account for the deceased person, you’ll likely find their friends and family posting sentiments and memories.

How to tell if someone is dead

Visit the website of a local place of worship. If you happen to know the church, synagogue, or other place of worships where a funeral may have been held, then its website might have posted a blurb or entire obituary on the person.

If you’re not sure about the specific place of worship, try looking for website links to institutions in the area where you know the person is from or where they died.

Do a general search on a search engine. Type the person’s name followed by obituary and/or death.

Be sure to include any other relevant information you can, such as a family member’s name, the location where they lived or died, their occupation, your guess on their cause of death, etc.

Here’s an example:

“john smith” death accident “las vegas” “wife mary”

When you’re including multiple words as part of a phrase, such as a name or location, be sure to surround them in quotes.

How to tell if someone is dead

If the person you’re looking for is a celebrity but a general search wasn’t helpful, search directly on Wikipedia or IMDb. These are the best websites for seeing if a celebrity has died because they’re updated quickly.

Check local news websites. It’s common for deaths to be reported in the news, but you might have luck only if it was an “out of the ordinary” death, which might include everything from a car accident to a murder or the death of someone really young.

This method for seeing if someone has died can help when coupled with the other techniques on this page. News stations are usually not allowed to post the deceased’s name, but a location and general date/time are often given.

Locate the person’s grave site to confirm whether they’ve passed away. This shouldn’t be your first pick because a grave site isn’t typically updated as soon as an obituary is posted, but they’re still helpful and especially useful for deaths that you’ve suspected happened a long time ago.

How to tell if someone is dead

See if they’re on a free genealogy website. You’ll be able to view their death date if they’re included in a family tree that’s been updated since they died.

Use a people finder search engine to see if he or she died. This method is the least helpful since these websites don’t usually focus on death, but they might show the person’s death date along with information they do normally keep, like the birth date, phone number, address, etc.

Can You Find Out How Someone Died?

Determining someone’s cause of death can be tricky. Short of asking a close friend or relative, your only real option is to search through the death record for the specifics.

If the above methods for finding out if someone is deceased weren’t helpful in seeing how they died, you might try something a little different. For example, if you’re doing a web search like in Step 4 above, try adding “cause of death” to the search.

The Answers May Be Difficult to Locate

Usually, however, the story about how someone has died is only posted online or somewhere with public access if it’s newsworthy. For example, this information might surface if the person was a celebrity, passed away tragically, or was involved in a police chase.

Otherwise, for everyday folks who pass away, like a colleague, old friend, family member, neighbor, etc., the cause of death is typically not public information.

If you think someone is in a federal prison system, you can use the federal online inmate locator service. For other places of incarceration, including county jails, use the Free Inmate Search website to find them according to state.

The easiest method is calling the court directly and asking them to look up a warrant status by name. Some states, including California, allow you to search for your warrant status on the sheriff’s department and superior court websites. There are general online warrant status websites, but these can be unreliable and disreputable.

When It’s Obvious That Resuscitation Isn’t Possible

How to tell if someone is dead

Rod Brouhard is an emergency medical technician paramedic (EMT-P), journalist, educator, and advocate for emergency medical service providers and patients.

How to tell if someone is dead

Michael Menna, DO, is board-certified in emergency medicine. He is an attending emergency medicine physician at White Plains Hospital in White Plains, New York and also works at an urgent care center and a telemedicine company that provides care to patients across the country.

Cardiac arrest is the hallmark of death. It’s the moment when the heart stops effectively pumping blood around to the muscles and tissues of the body, especially the brain.

This is the moment when every patient dies. You might see the term used in official press releases or media accounts (cause of death: cardiac arrest), but that’s like saying the reason someone fell was because of gravity.

How to tell if someone is dead

Cardiac arrest is recognized by the cessation of a pulse and of breathing. Officially, cardiac arrest is considered clinical death,   but it can be treated.

With proper CPR and possibly defibrillation, a person in cardiac arrest can sometimes be saved. There is a limit, however. Resuscitation doesn’t always have the potential to work.

Prolonged cardiac arrest or certain types of trauma that are just not survivable are considered insurmountable and attempts to resuscitate the person won’t be successful.

Brain Death

In the event of prolonged cardiac arrest, brain death (also known as biological death) is considered the absolute point of no return.  

5 Signs of Obvious and Irreversible Death

Some patients with cardiac arrest are simply not going to be resuscitated, no matter how hard rescuers try.

Cellular damage gets worse over time as the cells are not fed nutrients or oxygen, and as they build up toxins and carbon dioxide that needs to be removed.

The longer someone stays in cardiac arrest, the less likely they are to be revived with CPR or advanced treatments.  

To figure out who is too dead to be saved, emergency responders look for five signs of irreversible death:

  • Decapitation
  • Decomposition
  • Postmortem lividity
  • Postmortem rigidity
  • Burned beyond recognition


Separation of the head from the body is the worst-case scenario. There is currently nothing medical science can do to put a head back on a body and make it work.

Doctors can reattach toes, fingers, arms, legs, and even penises, but above-the-collar-level separation is a deal breaker.


Once the flesh begins to rot, there’s no possibility of resuscitation.

A word of clarification, however: flesh can die in areas around the body even on a live person. That’s why frostbite turns black.

When decomposition is a sign of death, it means that the entire body has begun to decompose, that the person is not breathing, and the heart is not beating.

Postmortem Lividity

When the blood stops flowing, gravity takes over. The Latin term is livor mortis or blue death. Blood settles in the lowest points of the body, which depends on the position the body is in at the time of death.

If someone dies in bed, the purple streaks on their backs—similar in color to bruises—will follow the wrinkles in the sheets and show that blood hasn’t been circulating for quite a while.

Lividity can show up in as little as 15 minutes.

Postmortem Rigidity

There’s a reason dead people are called “stiffs.”

Once the last little bit of energy is used up in muscle cells they get stiff until enzymes created through decomposition begin to break them down. The Latin term is rigor mortis or hard death.

The chemistry is complicated, but rigidity starts soon after death and lasts for days, depending on heat and humidity.

Burned Beyond Recognition

The last sign of irreversible death is very specific. It refers only to patients who die of burns.

This sign is self-explanatory. Once a victim is burned so badly that they’re no longer recognizable, there’s no chance of resuscitation.

A Word From Verywell

It’s not required to have all of these signs. However, in the presence of a person without a pulse, any of these signs is an indicator that there’s no need to attempt resuscitation.

When can you safely assume a person is dead and it would be fruitless to attempt resuscitation? This is a pertinent question for emergency responders and it’s commonly asked when someone is found long after their heart and breathing stopped.  

Professional rescuers aren’t the only people asked to decide whether to attempt CPR. Anyone may find themselves in a situation that brings up the question.

Even if you’ve never found yourself in a situation that asks you to make that decision, you may be wondering why paramedics didn’t do more to revive a patient in cardiac arrest. If one of the five signs applied, you have the answer.

How to tell if someone is dead

Don’t laugh, people have woken up in morgues over less.

“I implore you to have my body opened, so that I may not be buried alive.”

Composer Frédéric Chopin

Fear of being buried alive, or “taphophobia” for those wanting to impress dinner party guests, was a genuine concern in the 18th and 19th century, leading to the invention of safety coffins. Medical advancements over the past few centuries have made this more of an irrational phobia than a reality, but there’s always stories surfacing about living people pronounced dead.

The odds that you’re going to come across a seemingly lifeless body are hopefully slim, but it doesn’t hurt to know some reliable methods to make sure a person is actually dead. If it’s an actual emergency you should always call 911 immediately, but if you want to provide the dispatcher with useful info you might need to do a little more than just kick the body a few times. Here’s what you do…

1. Kick Them

How to tell if someone is dead

OK, OK, don’t kick the possibly dead body. But you should gently poke or shake them. It’s not entirely foolproof however, as an unconscious person may not respond at all, and a corpse may emit air or other noise that would indicate signs of life.

2. Check for a Pulse

How to tell if someone is dead

Hold your fingertips to the person’s wrist or on either side of their neck and see if you can feel for any sign of a beating heart. Again, this can often be difficult (even for pros) so no pulse doesn’t necessarily mean they are gone for good.

3. The Old Mirror Trick

How to tell if someone is dead

It’s a gag used in a lot of old movies, but it works. Hold a tiny mirror under the person’s nose and see if the glass fogs up. If you don’t have a mirror, use any glass-based surface like sunglasses or a powered-off cell phone screen. So long as it’s a dark reflective surface so you can easily see the fog.

4. Shine a Light

How to tell if someone is dead

Using a flashlight, direct the beam straight into the eye. If the pupil constricts, they’re probably alive. No response isn’t a good sign. If you don’t have a flashlight handy, use a flashlight app on a cell phone. (Who knew cell phones would be this handy for diagnosing death?)

5. The Sniff Test

How to tell if someone is dead

If you happen to have an onion handy, cut it in half and hold it in front of the person’s nose. The pungent odor will work like smelling salts and likely jolt the person awake…if, in fact, they are still with us.

6. The, Um, Other Sniff Test

It’s not pleasant, but often a body will release urine and excrement when it expires (not all the time, it kind of depends on how full the bladder or intestines were before the person passed), so soiled pants are another indication of the person being deceased.

How Doctors Pronounce Someone Dead

How to tell if someone is dead

Apart from performing many of the tests above, though with more reliable and expensive equipment, doctors or paramedics on the scene use technology. They hook a body up to machines that monitor heartbeat, brainwaves, and respiration. If you’ve ever watched a medical show you know exactly what they’re looking for: A flatline. Doctors may also do an ultrasound to see if there’s any heart activity.

by Jessica Saras / in Family

How to tell if someone is dead

If you haven’t heard from someone in awhile, you may be wondering whether the person is still alive. Perhaps you heard he passed away, but you aren’t completely sure. Maybe you just have a feeling. Whatever the reason–thanks to the Internet–it is now relatively easy to find out if someone has died.

  • If you haven’t heard from someone in awhile, you may be wondering whether the person is still alive.

Gather all of the information you have about the person in question. Obviously, the more information you have, the easier your search will be. At a minimum, you will at least need the person’s name.

Search the Social Security Death Index (see Resources). This free search will inform you if there is a death certificate on file for the individual.

Research public records and obituaries to learn more information. For best results, you will need to know where the person resided to access the appropriate websites.

  • Search the Social Security Death Index (see Resources).
  • For best results, you will need to know where the person resided to access the appropriate websites.

Check a nationwide database if your previous searches do not produce any information. Typically, these sites will provide a limited amount of information at no cost to you. For more detailed information, however, you will be required to pay a fee (usually no more than £32, as of 2010).

Contact a private detective if you are unable to find any information about the individual. If you have a very limited amount of information, then this may be your only option.


Be prepared to hear that your loved one is, in fact, deceased. This could be more of an emotional blow than you expect.

What is suicide?

Suicide is death caused by self-inflicted injury with the intent to die.

Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the U.S. One person dies by suicide about every 11 minutes. It is the second leading cause of death among people ages 10 to 34, the fourth leading cause of death among people ages 34 to 54 and the fifth leading cause of death among people ages among those ages 45 to 54.

Groups of people who have higher rates of suicide include:

  • American Indian/Alaska Native and non-Hispanic White people.
  • Veterans.
  • Rural dwellers.
  • Young people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender.

What are the situations– risk factors – that could lead someone to consider suicide?

Although you may not know what might cause a friend or loved one to attempt suicide, there are at least some common characteristics to be aware of.

Known factors that increase an individual’s risk of suicide include:

Individual factors

  • Has attempted suicide in the past.
  • Has a mental health condition, such as depression and mood disorders, schizophrenia, anxiety disorders.
  • Has long-term pain or a disabling or terminal illness.
  • Expresses feelings of hopelessness.
  • Has money or legal problems.
  • Has violent or impulsive behavior.
  • Has alcohol or other substance abuse problems.
  • Has easy access to self-harm methods, such as firearms or medications.

Relationship factors

  • Has a history of physical, emotional or sexual abuse; or neglect or bullying.
  • Has lost relationships through break-up, divorce or death.
  • Has a family history of death by suicide.
  • Is socially isolated; lacks support.

Community, cultural, societal factors

  • Is ashamed to ask for help, especially help for mental health conditions.
  • Lacks access to healthcare services, especially mental health and substance abuse treatment.
  • Holds cultural or religious belief that suicide is a noble option to resolving a personal dilemma.
  • Has become aware of an increased number of local suicides or an increase in media coverage of deaths by suicide.

What are some of the most common suicide warning signs?

Some of the more common warning signs that a person may be thinking of ending their life include:

  • Being sad or moody: The person has long-lasting sadness and mood swings. Depression is a major risk factor for suicide.
  • Sudden calmness: The person suddenly becomes calm after a period of depression or moodiness.
  • Withdrawing from others: The person chooses to be alone and avoids friends or social activities. They also lose of interest or pleasure in activities they previously enjoyed.
  • Changes in personality, appearance, sleep pattern: The person’s attitude or behavior changes, such as speaking or moving with unusual speed or slowness. Also, they suddenly become less concerned about their personal appearance. They sleep much more or much less than typical for that person.
  • Showing dangerous or self-harmful behavior: The person engages in potentially dangerous behavior, such as driving recklessly, having unsafe sex or increase their use of drugs and/or alcohol.
  • Experiencing recent trauma or life crisis: Examples of crises include the death of a loved one or pet, divorce or break-up of a relationship, diagnosis of a major illness, loss of a job or serious financial problems.
  • Being in a state of deep despair: The person talks about feeling hopeless, having no reason to live, being a burden to others, feeling trapped or being in severe emotional pain.
  • Making preparations: The person begins to put their personal business in order. This might include visiting friends and family members, giving away personal possessions, making a will and cleaning up their room or home. Often the person will search online for ways to die or buy a gun. Some people will write a note before attempting suicide.
  • Threatening suicide or talking about wanting to die: Not everyone who is considering suicide will say so, and not everyone who threatens suicide will follow through with it. However, every threat of suicide should be taken seriously.

Can suicide be prevented?

In many cases, suicide can be prevented. The best way you can help prevent suicide is to:

  • Learn the risk factors for suicide.
  • Be alert to the signs of depression and other mental health conditions.
  • Recognize suicide warning signs.
  • Provide caring support.
  • Ask directly if the person has considered hurting themselves.

People who receive support from caring friends and family and who have access to mental health services are less likely to act on their suicidal impulses than are those who are isolated from support.

What should I do if someone I know is talking about suicide?

If your friend or loved one is not in immediate danger but is talking about suicide and is showing risk factors for harming themselves, take them seriously. If you can, remove any objects that can be used in a suicide attempt. Encourage them to call – or call together – support services such as the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-(TALK) (1-800-273-8255). Conversations are with a skilled, trained counselor and are free and confidential and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

If the friend or loved one appears to be extremely distressed, don’t leave the person alone. Try to keep the person as calm as possible and get immediate help. Call 911 or take the person to an emergency room.

A note from Cleveland Clinic

If someone you know is exhibiting warning signs for suicide, don’t be afraid to ask if he or she is depressed or thinking about suicide. Listen without judging. In some cases, your friend or family member just needs to know that you care and are willing to hear them talk about how they are feeling. Encourage them to seek professional help.

If you have suicidal thoughts, know that you are not alone. Also know that help is available 24/7. Call your healthcare provider, go to the emergency room or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, 1-800-273-TALK.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 06/18/2021.


  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Suicide Prevention. ( Accessed 6/2/2021.
  • Suicide Prevention Lifeline. We Can All Prevent Suicide. ( Accessed 6/2/2021.
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Help Prevent Suicide. ( Accessed 6/2/2021.
  • American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. About Suicide. ( Accessed 6/2/2021.

Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy

A deceased loved one can visit us at any time, in many forms.

Have you ever felt a comforting presence even though no one else was around or smelled a familiar fragrance though nothing could be accounted for that scent? Deceased loved ones are beside you, watching over you at times when you’re good and times when you’re stressed. Their spirit will wrap around you and they will make you feel loved and blessed. The truth is, when you are in the presence of a deceased loved one, you can be assured that God is close. Whether you’ve sensed the presence of a deceased loved one or not, you can be assured that they are guiding you, and always looking out for you. Here are six signs a loved one is trying to contact you.

Feeling Their Presence

Are you struggling with a decision, but then a sudden sense of peace and calm washes over you when you weigh one of your options? One sign that a deceased loved one is trying to contact you is a sudden, overwhelming feeling of their presence. It may come over you in the sense of love and peace. A loved one will make you feel a very comforting feeling. Sometimes, people feel a warm, tingling sensation throughout their body during meditation or a total sense of calm when they wake up in the morning. If this is happening to you, this may be a sign that you’re in the presence of a loved one.

Smelling Their Fragrance

A deceased loved one may send you messages perceptible through scent. If you can’t explain an unexpectedly pleasant smell, it may be a sign that a deceased loved one is nearby. Many say that these sweet scents may simply be your loved one’s way of reaching out to you to let you know they are with you. The smells may take the form of delicious food, fragrant flowers, or a pleasant perfume that a deceased love one used to wear. They may also send messages through sights and sounds.


When you are not paying attention and a deceased loved one is trying to get their message across, they might use a little humor to help you take notice; it’s called repetition or synchronicity. This is a symbolic message to you. If you’ve ever heard the saying, “pay attention when things happen in threes” repetition should make sense. For example, within a matter of days three different people mention the same person. This is a sign that the deceased is trying to get in touch with that person. A deceased loved one doesn’t give up on communication. So if you hear the same thing repeated over and over again in your head, listen to it and act upon it. If you experience repeated coincidences, synchronicities, or dreams around the same theme, pay attention because your loved one may be trying to tell you something important.

Hearing Their Voice

Hearing a loved one’s voice is another major sign that they are trying to contact you. Some people will actually hear their loved ones voice in the form of an outward or an inner whisper. You may feel an overwhelming sense of knowing that you may not have had before. Have you ever had a big decision to make and then seemingly out of nowhere, you know exactly what to do next? Or maybe you’ve asked for healing and got a sudden rush of inspiration to make a good decision. You might also have a true sense of knowing that your loved one is near, even if you’re not entirely sure why or how you know. Tuning into the knowing is a sign that a loved one is speaking to you and possibly guiding you to making a good decision.

Dream Visitations

One really common way a deceased loved one will communicate with you is through dreams and visions. What sets these dreams apart is the fact that they don’t feel like any dream that you’ve had before. The deceased loved one may show up in the dream out of nowhere, often surrounded by light. They may say something directly to you, but often in these dream sequences, you feel a sense of calm or peace, signaling that they are ok. They want you to know that they are in a good place and they want you to feel that comfort too.

A Phone Call

Another way a deceased loved on may try to reach you is by phone. You may suddenly receive a series of calls from unknown numbers often in the immediate days following a loved ones passing. These phone calls may come through in the months, even years after their death. When you pick the calls up, you may not hear a voice, but a lot of static. While you may not hear an audible voice, they are signaling to you that they are ok.

A deceased loved one can visit us at any time and their presence can overwhelm us. They may make an appearance when you’re driving home from work, leaving the mall, or having a rough period. They can also show up to assist you if you’re going through a transition, in prayer, dreaming and in so many more ways. It’s important that you pay attention and to the signs they may be sending your way. When you start noticing the slightest signals that they are with you, their voice and presence can help you find comfort and peace in their loss.

Nothing has to be done immediately after a person’s death. Take the time you need. Some people want to stay in the room with the body; others prefer to leave. You might want to have someone make sure the body is lying flat before the joints become stiff. This rigor mortis begins sometime during the first few hours after death. How to tell if someone is dead

After the death, how long you can stay with the body may depend on where death happens. If it happens at home, there is no need to move the body right away. This is the time for any special religious, ethnic, or cultural customs that are performed soon after death.

If the death seems likely to happen in a facility, such as a hospital or nursing home, discuss any important customs or rituals with the staff early on, if possible. That will allow them to plan so you can have the appropriate time with the body.

Some families want time to sit quietly with the body, console each other, and maybe share memories. You could ask a member of your religious community or a spiritual counselor to come. If you have a list of people to notify, this is the time to call those who might want to come and see the body before it is moved.

When your spouse or loved one dies, your entire world may change. You may feel a variety of different emotions like anger, guilt, or sadness. Remember that everyone grieves differently and there is no sole right way to grieve. You may find that surrounding yourself with loved ones, joining a support group, or talking to a professional may help you cope with loss.

Get a Legal Pronouncement of Death

As soon as possible, the death must be officially pronounced by someone in authority like a doctor in a hospital or nursing facility or a hospice nurse. This person also fills out the forms certifying the cause, time, and place of death. These steps will make it possible for an official death certificate to be prepared. This legal form is necessary for many reasons, including life insurance and financial and property issues.

Make Arrangements for After Death

If the person was in hospice, a plan for what happens after death will already be in place. If death happens at home without hospice, try to talk with the doctor, local medical examiner (coroner), your local health department, or a funeral home representative in advance about how to proceed. You can also consider a home funeral, which is legal in most states.

Arrangements should be made to pick up the body as soon as the family is ready and according to local laws. This can be done by a funeral home or by the family themselves in most states. The hospital or nursing facility, if that is where the death took place, may help with these arrangements. If at home, you will need to contact the funeral home directly, make arrangements yourself, or ask a friend or family member to do that for you.

The doctor may ask if you want an autopsy. This is a medical procedure conducted by a specially trained physician to learn more about what caused the death. For example, if the person who died was believed to have Alzheimer’s disease, a brain autopsy will allow for a definitive diagnosis. If your religion or culture objects to autopsies, talk to the doctor. Some people planning a funeral with a viewing worry about having an autopsy, but the physical signs of an autopsy are usually hidden by clothing and other body preparation techniques.

What to Do Within A Few Weeks of Death

Over the next few weeks, you may want to notify a few places about your loved one’s death. This may include:

  • The Social Security Administration. If the deceased was receiving Social Security benefits, you need to stop the checks.
  • Life insurance companies. You will need a death certificate and policy numbers to make claims on any policies.
  • Credit agencies. To prevent identity theft, you will want to send copies of the death certificate to three major firms: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.
  • Banks and financial institutions. If your loved one left a list of accounts and passwords, it will be much easier to close or change accounts. You will need a copy of the death certificate if the person did not leave a list.

At some time before death or right after it, the doctor may ask about donating organs such as the heart, lungs, pancreas, kidneys, cornea, liver, and skin. Organ donation allows healthy organs from someone who died to be transplanted into living people who need them. People of any age can be organ donors.

The person who is dying may have already said that he or she would like to be an organ donor. Some States list this information on the driver’s license. If not, the decision has to be made quickly. There is no cost to the donor’s family for this gift of life. If the person has requested a Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) order but wants to donate organs, he or she might have to indicate that the desire to donate supersedes the DNR. That is because it might be necessary to use machines to keep the heart beating until the medical staff is ready to remove the donated organs.

Brain donation is a separate process and registering as an organ donor does not mean you are choosing to donate your brain. If the person is registered as a brain donor, their point of contact will need to be notified within two hours after death.

When a friend or family member passes away, you might have an agreement in place with them that you will take over ownership of their car after they have passed on. If the deceased has a registered will that says that you are to assume ownership of the vehicle upon their death, then your state’s probate court will automatically transfer ownership to you. But if there is no will or the will has no mention of the vehicle, then there is a process you need to follow.

Probate Takes Precedent

If you are trying to transfer the vehicle of a deceased person while that person’s estate is still in probate, then you might not be able to register the vehicle. Before attempting to transfer ownership, it is a good idea to contact the probate court to see if you are allowed to transfer the title.

Each state has its own probate laws that can affect the transfer of a vehicle title after someone passes away. Some states allow the transfer of a vehicle title after a person passes on for vehicles below a certain value, while other states do not allow it at all. The easiest way to transfer a vehicle title is to have the vehicle owner add you to the title as a co-owner of the vehicle before they pass away. In order to do this, the vehicle will need to be paid for.

Transfer Form For Title

If you are the co-owner on the title of a vehicle of someone who has passed away, then you can apply for a title that lists only you as the owner. You will need to get a title transfer form from your local DMV office, the death certificate of the deceased and your picture identification.

Without Help From Probate

If you are not getting the title transferred automatically by probate, then you will need to register the new title with the courts. You will need to also submit the documents proving that you are allowed to transfer the title and the hold-harmless agreement from the court that says that you are allowed to take possession of this piece of the deceased’s property.

Varies From State To State

This is a general guide to transferring the title of a car after someone passes on. The specific rules on how to do this are different in each state, but this guide will help you to get started on your process of transferring the title to your name.

When someone passes on, the distribution of their estate is determined by the state probate court. By following the probate court rules, you may be able to transfer the title for a deceased person’s vehicle to your name.

How to tell if someone is dead

Jim Treebold is a North Carolina based writer. He lives by the mantra of “Learn 1 new thing each day”! Jim loves to write, read, pedal around on his electric bike and dream of big things. Drop him a line if you like his writing, he loves hearing from his readers!

This page addresses paper savings bonds.

(Electronic bonds: If the person who died has an online TreasuryDirect account, contact the Bureau of Fiscal Service directly. We will put a hold on the account and give specific instructions for the situation.)

For a paper bond owned by someone deceased, this page shows:

Note: Individual savings bonds may not be split and must be distributed in full.

How to determine who owns the bond

In this situation This person owns the bond
Only one person is named on the bond and that person dies The bond is part of that person’s estate
Two people are named on the bond and both have died The bond is part of the estate of the person who died last.
Two people are named on the bond and one dies The surviving person becomes the owner as if the survivor had been the only owner from the time the bond was issued. For the tax implications of this situation, see “Who pays taxes and when” further down this page.

If a survivor is named on the bond

  • Series EE and Series I

As the survivor, you have three options:

  • Do nothing.
  • Cash (redeem) the bond.
  • Reissue: Have the bond reissued in the survivor’s name alone.
  • Series HH

    As the survivor, you have four options:

    • Do nothing. The bond will continue to earn interest until the bond matures. Semi-annual interest payments will be held by our office and paid when the bond is cashed.
    • Cash (redeem) the bond.
    • Reissue: Have the bond reissued in the survivor’s name. The new owner may add a coowner or beneficiary to the bond.
    • Submit a certified copy of the owner’s death certificate, along with FS Form 5396 (download or order). The bond will not be physically reissued, but you will receive future semi-annual interest payments for the security. (We don’t return a death certificate or other legal evidence.)
  • Cash (Redeem) a paper bond with a named survivor

    Series EE and Series I: Go to a financial institution that pays savings bonds and show adequate identification and any supporting documents that may be required. Before going, it might be helpful to call the financial institution to find out what identification and documents you need.

    Series HH: Your local bank is not authorized to cash these bonds, but can help you submit your transaction. See “Cashing Series HH Savings Bonds.”

    Reissuing a paper bond with a survivor named on it

    Series EE and Series I: These bonds are no longer reissued in paper form. Instead, the bonds are converted to electronic bonds in TreasuryDirect. If you are the survivor, you can convert your bond using SmartExchange.

    After it’s converted, the bond will be registered in your name alone.

    Series HH: These bonds are still reissued in paper form. See instructions at “Reissuing or Replacing Series HH Savings Bonds.”

    If no survivor is named on the bond, and no court is involved

    The instructions in this section are for the situation in which no person named on the bond is living and all of the following are true. The estate of the person who died (or who died last if two people are named on the bond)

    • has not been and will not be formally administered through a court
    • has not been and will not be settled under special provisions of state law relating to small estates
    • contains bonds totaling $100,000 or less in redemption value as of the date of death

    For a paper bond, when no survivor is named and no court is involved, the person or people who are entitled to request disposition of the paper bond must follow these steps:

    1. Fill out FS Form 5336 (download or order).
    2. Sign the form in the presence of a certifying official (as explained on the form).
    3. Pack up
      • the bond and completed FS Form 5336
      • a certified copy of the death certificate for each deceased person named on the bond (we don’t return a death certificate or other legal evidence)
    4. Mail the package to the address on FS Form 5336.

    If the bonds are being distributed to the persons entitled, rather than paid to the voluntary representative, additional forms may be necessary.

    Depending on the transaction requested, additional forms may be necessary.

    If a court or state law is involved

    Note: If an estate contains Treasury securities (including savings bonds) that total more than $100,000 in redemption value as of the date of death, the estate must be administered by a court.

    If a court is involved, you might have one of these situations:

    • the estate is being settled under special provisions of state law
    • a court-appointed representative is in charge of distributing the estate
    • a court-appointed representative was in charge but has been discharged before the bonds are distributed

    For details on handling bonds in these situations, see “Court-Appointed Representatives.”

    Who pays taxes and when

    To understand the tax implications of various situations related to the death of a savings bond owner, consult your tax advisor or these Internal Revenue Service (IRS) publications:

    Investment Income and Expenses IRS Publication 550
    Your Federal Income Tax IRS Publication 17
    Survivors, Executors, and Administrators IRS Publication 559


    • A savings bond that has reached final maturity, or is within one month of reaching it, may not be reissued. It may be cashed.
    • Series EE and Series I bonds mature 30 years after their issue date. Series HH bonds reach maturity 20 years after issue.

    Authorities are working to identify the dozens of victims, who are believed to be migrants. Three people have been detained. And local police planned to search the site for more bodies on Tuesday.

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  • How to tell if someone is dead

    How to tell if someone is dead

    Authorities in Texas are investigating the deaths of 46 people after they were discovered inside a tractor-trailer in San Antonio on Monday, one of the highest death tolls involving migrants crossing into the United States.

    Federal investigators are working with local and state police to identify the victims. Three people have been detained so far and local police planned to search the site again for more bodies on Tuesday.

    Here’s what we know so far.

    The investigation will continue Tuesday.

    The mayor of San Antonio, Ron Nirenberg, called the deaths a “horrific human tragedy” at a news conference on Monday evening. The police chief, William McManus, said three people had been detained.

    At least 16 people are in the hospital, including some children, who appeared to be suffering from “heat stroke, heat exhaustion,” said Charles Hood, the fire chief of San Antonio.

    All the victims are believed to have been brought into the United States illegally through the border with Mexico. The closest border crossing is about 140 miles away.

    Where are the migrants from?

    The dead included 22 Mexicans, seven Guatemalans and two Hondurans, Mexico’s foreign minister, Marcelo Ebrard, said on Tuesday on Twitter. Others have not yet been identified. Officials from the governments of Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico said on Monday night that they were investigating.

    Violence in Central America, especially tied to gangs, has forced people to make the trek to the United States through Mexico. Climate change has also played a role.

    How to tell if someone is dead

    A nearby worker discovered the truck.

    A worker from a nearby business heard a cry for help and went out to investigate, Chief McManus said. The worker found the doors of the trailer partially open and bodies inside. The truck was found on a road sandwiched between train tracks and auto salvage yards. Several farms are nearby.

    A local couple who rushed to the scene to pray for the victims after they were discovered said the area was known as a “drop-off spot” for migrants.

    How common is this?

    The journey north for migrants crossing into the U.S. from Mexico is typically dangerous, and sometimes fatal. Smugglers often transport large numbers in trailers, vans or S.U.V.s through remote areas in sweltering weather. And in recent years, dozens of migrants have died in crashes while traveling north.

    San Antonio is a major transit point for migrants making their way from Texas to places across the United States. Tens of thousands of migrants have passed through the city in recent months, according to immigrant advocates.

    What’s the situation on the border?

    The number of migrants stopped at the southwestern border rose in May to the highest in decades, according to Customs and Border Protection data. In recent days, law enforcement officials along the border and in nearby counties have expressed concern at the number of arriving migrants in Texas, which has long been one of the most heavily trafficked borders for migrants.

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    How to tell if someone is dead

    How to tell if someone is dead

    Just because you’re in possession of your family member’s vehicle doesn’t mean you automatically own it. Your name isn’t on the title nor is it registered in your name.

    To make this happen, the owner of the vehicle has to sign it over to you, the new owner. There are a couple ways you can do this.

    To obtain ownership of a deceased person’s car, check the title

    If the current title on file is a newer version, it has a line on it designating the beneficiary. If you’re the beneficiary, bring the title and a copy of the death certificate to the DMV title office and they’ll have you fill out a new title in your name with your own beneficiary listed. Then, just register it in your name.

    If someone else is specified as the beneficiary on the title who isn’t you, that person has the right to the car and you have to make arrangement with him/her to transfer ownership. If the named beneficiary is also deceased and the title was never updated, you’ll need to show a death certificate for that person, too.

    Old titles don’t have a field that specifies a beneficiary, so transferring isn’t so simple.

    No beneficiary on the title and other complications

    If there is no beneficiary listed on the title, have the current owner sign over the vehicle to you. If the bequeathing owner is still alive, they can fill out the back of the title to gift or sell it to you (depending on your relation). Either both parties need to be present at the DMV or the title form needs to be notarized.

    If the title can’t be located at the time but the owner is still alive, they can fill out a motor vehicle power of attorney form to let you obtain a certificate of title. This also needs to be notarized.

    If the owner has deceased and you don’t have any official paperwork proving your right to acquire the vehicle, you’ll have to prove ownership rights in court. You’ll need a copy of the will that bequeaths the car (or the inclusion of the car in the estate) to you and go through probate. It’s a lot of work and could involve a lawyer and additional documents like letters of administration. That’s not to mention the trouble that an existing lien on the car or a challenge of ownership could bring.

    If at all possible, have the transfer made or documented thorough when the owner is still alive. If will save you a lot of time, frustration, and extra work.

    The News Wheel is a digital auto magazine providing readers with a fresh perspective on the latest car news. We’re located in the heart of America (Dayton, Ohio) and our goal is to deliver an entertaining and informative perspective on what’s trending in the automotive world. See more articles from The News Wheel.

    We know that dealing with the loss of a relative is very difficult. To protect the privacy of your loved one, it is our policy to honor the initial agreement that they made with us, even in the event of their passing.

    In these cases, Yahoo has a process in place to request that your loved one’s account be closed, billing and premium services suspended, and any contents deleted for privacy.

    Unfortunately, Yahoo cannot provide passwords or allow access to the deceased’s account, including account content such as email. At the time of registration, all account holders agree to the Terms of Service (TOS). Pursuant to the Terms, neither the Yahoo account nor any of the content therein are transferable, even when the account owner is deceased.

    Requesting to close the account

    To process this kind of request, Yahoo requires specific documentation:

    • A letter containing your request and stating the Yahoo ID of the deceased
    • A copy of a document appointing the requesting party as the personal representative or executor of the estate of the deceased
    • A copy of the death certificate of the Yahoo account holder

    Sending options

    Please send the requested information to us at the following address:

    Concierge Executive Escalations

    22000 AOL Way
    Dulles, VA 20166

    Again, we extend our condolences to you and your family.

    Need to close an AT&T or Frontier account? Contact the partner company for help.

    When a loved one dies, children feel and show their grief in different ways. How kids cope with the loss depends on things like their age, how close they felt to the person who died, and the support they receive.

    Here are some things parents can do to help a child who has lost a loved one:

    Use simple words to talk about death. Be calm and caring when you tell your child that someone has died. Use words that are clear and direct. “I have some sad news to tell you. Grandma died today.” Pause to give your child a moment to take in your words.

    Listen and comfort. Every child reacts in their own way when they learn that a loved one has died. Some kids cry. Some ask questions. Others seem not to react at all. That’s OK. Stay with your child to offer hugs or comfort. Answer your child’s questions. Or just be together for a few minutes. It’s OK if your child sees your sadness or tears.

    Put feelings into words. Ask kids to say what they’re thinking and feeling. Label some of your own feelings. This makes it easier for kids to share theirs. Say things like, “I know you’re feeling very sad. I’m sad, too. We both loved Grandma so much, and she loved us too.”

    Tell your child what to expect. If the death of a loved one means changes in your child’s life or routine, explain what will happen. This helps your child feel prepared. For example, “Aunt Sara will pick you up from school like Grandma used to.” Or, “I need to stay with Grandpa for a few days. That means you and Dad will be home taking care of each other. But I’ll talk to you every day, and I’ll be back on Sunday.”

    Explain events that will happen. Allow children to join in rituals like viewings, funerals, or memorial services. Tell them ahead of time what will happen. For example, “Lots of people who loved Grandma will be there. We will sing, pray, and talk about Grandma’s life. People might cry and hug. They might say to us, ‘I’m sorry for your loss.’ We can say, ‘Thank you,’ or, ‘Thanks for coming.’ You can stay near me and hold my hand if you want.”

    You might need to explain burial or cremation. For example, “After the funeral, there is a burial at a cemetery. The person’s body is in a casket (or coffin) that gets buried in the ground with a special ceremony. This can feel like a sad goodbye, and people might cry.” Share your family’s beliefs about what happens to a person’s soul or spirit after death.

    Explain what will happen after the service, too. For example, “We all will go eat food together. People will laugh, talk, and hug some more. Talking about happy times with Grandma and being together helps people start to feel better.”

    Give your child a role. Having a small, active role lets kids feel part of things and helps them cope. You might invite your child to read a poem, pick a song to be played, gather some photos to display, or make something. Let kids decide if they want to take part, and how.

    Help your child remember the person. In the days and weeks ahead, encourage your child to draw pictures or write down stories of their loved one. Don’t avoid talking about the person who died. Sharing happy memories helps heal grief.

    Give comfort and reassure your child. Notice if your child seems sad, worried, or upset in other ways. Ask about feelings and listen. Let your child know that it takes time to feel better after a loved one dies. Some kids may have trouble sleeping or have fears or worries. Let kids know these things will get better. Give them extra time and care. Support groups and counseling can help kids who need more support.

    Help your child feel better. Provide the comfort your child needs but don’t dwell on sad feelings. After a few minutes of talking and listening, shift to an activity or topic that helps your child feel a little better. Play, make art, cook, or go somewhere together.

    Give your child time to heal from the loss. Grief is a process that happens over time. Be sure to talk often and listen to see how your child is feeling and doing. Healing doesn’t mean forgetting about your loved one. It means remembering the person with love. Loving memories stir good feelings that support us as we go on to enjoy life.

    Get more help if needed. If a loved one’s death was sudden, deeply stressful, or violent, a child may need therapy to help them heal. If your child’s distress lasts for more than a few weeks, or if you think your family needs more help, talk with your child’s doctor. They can help you find the right therapist to work with.

    By Indeed Editorial Team

    Updated August 11, 2021 | Published February 12, 2020

    Updated August 11, 2021

    Published February 12, 2020

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    When someone close to you passes away, taking bereavement leave from work can provide you time to process the loss and take a step toward healing. If you choose to take bereavement leave, it’s highly advisable to follow your company’s guidelines. Doing so can help ensure that your team members can function smoothly in your absence and that you will receive the appropriate pay. In this article, we explain what bereavement leave is and how to request it professionally.

    What is bereavement leave?

    Bereavement is a period of grief or mourning a person experiences after a loss, and bereavement leave is employer-sanctioned time off work granted after the death of a loved one.

    Larger companies often have official policies for how to support bereaved employees. Other businesses, especially small to medium firms, work with their employees to determine their bereavement leave requirements on a case-by-case basis.

    Family bereavement, or the death of a close relative, is the most common reason employers grant bereavement leave. The following people qualify as close relatives for most employers:

    Your parents, including step-parents and adoptive parents

    Your spouse or civil partner

    Your children, including step-children and adoptive children

    Some companies also recognize grandparents, grandchildren and the parents and siblings of your spouse as close relatives. Also, some companies allow employees to take bereavement leave following the loss of an extended family member or a close friend.

    How to ask for bereavement leave

    It is important to discuss bereavement leave parameters with your employer before taking time off. Most employers support bereaved employees and understand their need to take time off. Organize your bereavement leave as soon as possible after your loved one passes to respect your own emotions and the workflow of your employer.

    Follow these steps when requesting bereavement leave:

    1. Notify your employer as soon as possible

    If your loved one is not in good health, you may choose to discuss the situation with your employer openly. This will prepare them for the possibility that you may take bereavement leave. During this time, if your company allows, you may also want to take time off to visit your loved ones and care for them. Some employers will grant you paid vacation time or agree to remote work arrangements, especially if you live far from family. If you find out suddenly that you will need bereavement leave, you may choose to let your supervisor know in a quick conversation before submitting an official request.

    2. Review your bereavement leave policy

    Companies with bereavement leave policies typically outline them in their employee handbook. Check your employee handbook to determine your company’s requirements and steps for bereaved employees requesting and taking leave.

    Determine whether your company offers paid bereavement leave and how long your bereavement time lasts. You should also know whether your bereavement leave is separate from your regular leave entitlements or whether your company will deduct it from your paid vacation days. Once you understand the terms of your bereavement leave, you can make the arrangements you need. You might prefer to use paid vacation time, rather than unpaid bereavement leave, to minimize financial stress.

    Sometimes only select employees qualify for paid leave. Many companies only offer paid bereavement leave to their full-time employees. Some also require full-time employees to serve a probation period, such as three months of continuous employment with the company, before claiming paid bereavement leave. Part-time workers, independent contractors and new hires can still usually take bereavement leave, but their companies may not offer paid leave.

    Determine whether your company requires you to save and submit documents, such as funeral programs, when you return. If your company requires these documents, let your manager know if you are not attending the funeral.

    If the employee handbook does not note bereavement leave terms, discuss your circumstances with your supervisor or human resources department to learn how to proceed. Some businesses offer time off for bereaved employees but don’t have formal policies.

    Ask for a signed copy of bereavement leave documentation rather than relying on verbal agreements. Documentation clearly detailing the terms of your bereavement leave minimizes confusion about your intended date of return and clarifies your entitlements.

    3. Determine how much time off you want and make a timeline

    Consider your responsibilities, your own mental health and your finances when determining how much time off you want to take. Many employees take a combination of bereavement leave and personal leave after the loss of a loved one. If your company has a generous paid leave policy, you might take an extended break. You could also use sick leave, vacation time or personal days.

    Creating a timeline for your leave and return to work should help you organize your thoughts after your loss. Note the funeral date, dates for travel, work deadlines and when you plan to return to the office. Some people return to work part-time before transitioning back to full-time work. If you intend to do this, note when these transitions will occur.

    4. Make a written request for bereavement leave

    After discussing your need for bereavement leave with your supervisor and human resources department, put your request in writing. Your written leave request gives you and your employer something to refer to during and after your leave. A formal letter is often best, but an email may suffice for some workplaces. Ask what your company prefers in your face-to-face or phone call meeting.

    How to tell if someone is dead

    Related Articles

    • What Happens to the Loan on a House When the Homeowner Dies?
    • Can I Deduct Mortgage Payments I Paid on My Son’s Home?
    • Pros & Cons of Investing in Tax-Lien Properties
    • Can a Property Held in Trust Be Subject to Lien by the Government?
    • Consequences of Defaulting on a Mortgage

    It would be nice if liens and mortgages disappeared into thin air when the owner of the land dies, but that is not the case in this country. A lien represents a debt and is secured by the land. This means that whoever gets the land gets the lien as well. If you are thinking of buying a piece of property that carries a lien, be sure to get informed before you sign on the dotted line.

    A lien on property travels with the property. If the landowner dies, a beneficiary, heir or buyer takes the land with the lien. In many cases, the lien holder can also have the property sold to pay the lien.

    Types of Liens

    A lien is a legal document giving a creditor an interest in the debtor’s property. Not every debt creates a lien. If you borrow $20 from a co-worker for lunch, he doesn’t automatically get a property lien in the amount of $20. Only certain debts, like property tax debts, become liens against property without court action. In other cases, the debtor voluntarily allows a creditor to have a lien, like when you buy real property and take out a mortgage loan. If a debt is not one of those types of debts, the creditor must go to court and get a judgment against the debtor. When she files the judgment in a county recorder’s office, it creates a judgment lien against all real estate the person owns in the county.

    For example, if the debtor lives in San Francisco, the creditor files the judgment with the Office of the Assessor-Recorder in City Hall at Justin Herman Plaza. Once that happens, it creates a judgment lien on all property the debtor owns in the county.

    A lien is a security interest in the property. Like a home mortgage, the creditor is protected by the property. Generally, a property with a lien can’t be readily sold without paying off the lien. If the creditor decides to collect her money, she can arrange to sell the property herself and gets her debt repaid.

    Inheriting Liened Property

    If a property owner dies, his property usually is collected and distributed to beneficiaries or next of kin in a court-supervised process called probate. The person in charge of probate, termed the executor, is charged with paying off the deceased’s debts before assets are distributed. If the person who died had sufficient money in bank and investment accounts, the executor may pay off the underlying debt, then pass the land title to those named in the will, or the land goes to the next of kin if there was no will.

    The executor can also contest a lien if she feels that it is not correct. She can take the matter to court to resolve or negotiate and arrange to pay the debt for less.


    It is a legal requirement that every death that takes place in Ireland must be recorded and registered. Records of deaths in Ireland are held in the General Register Office, which holds records relating to Births, Marriages and Deaths in Ireland. You can apply for a copy of a death certificate to any Registrar of Births, Marriages and Death or to the General Register Office.

    Deaths caused by COVID-19

    Where a death is due to COVID-19, the death should be reported to the local coroner’s office. The coroner will send a certificate to the registration office. You do not have to do anything else.

    What you need to register the death

    To register a death, you must bring a Death Notification Form stating the cause of death to any Registrar of Births, Marriages and Deaths.

    You get the Death Notification Form from the doctor who attended the person who died. You must complete Part 2 of the Death Notification Form and take it to the registry office. You will need to bring photo ID with you. The registration is free.

    You must register the death within 3 months of the date the person died.

    If the cause of death is not known

    A doctor cannot give you the Death Notification Form if they do not know the cause of death, or if they didn’t see the deceased person in the 28 days before the death occurred. In this case, they must inform a Coroner who may decide a postmortem is necessary.

    If the person died as the result of an accident, or in violent or unexplained circumstances, the coroner must be informed.

    There may be a delay in registering a death where a postmortem is carried out. The death is automatically registered where an inquest or postmortem is held at the request of the Coroner. The Coroner issues a certificate to the Registrar containing all the details to be registered.

    While you are waiting for an inquest or post-mortem to be carried out, you can get an Interim Certificate of the Fact of Death from the Coroner’s office. You can use this to inform institutions like banks, insurance companies and the Department of Social Protection that the death has occurred.


    If the person who died had no relatives

    The death must be registered by a ‘qualified informant’. This is usually a close family member of the person who has died, but can also be:

    • A relative of the deceased person
    • Someone who lived with the deceased person
    • The deceased person’s personal representative
    • A person who was present at the death
    • An official of the hospital or institution where the person died
    • A person who found the body or took charge of that body
    • The person who arranged the funeral
    • Any other person who has knowledge of the death and knows the details needed to register the death

    Getting the death certificate

    You can get copies of the death certificate from the registration office when you are registering the death. To get a copy of a death certificate at a later stage, you can go directly to any civil registration office. You can also apply for a death certificate:

    • By sending a form
    • Online
    • In person at a registry office
    • By email or phone (not available in Dublin, Kildare and Wicklow)

    Death certificate fees

    There is no charge for registering a death. But you may have to pay for a copy of the death certificate

    The fees charged for a certificate are as follows:

    • €20 for a full standard certificate
    • Free for a copy for social welfare purposes (letter from Department of Social Protection required)
    • Free if the deceased was less than 1 year old and you are getting the death certificate at the time of registering the death
    • €5 for an uncertified copy of an entry in the Register
    • €10 to have a certificate authenticated (only available from the General Register Office)

    Contact details

    Contact information for Registrars of Births, Marriages and Deaths throughout Ireland is available on the HSE’s website and from your Local Health Office.

    You can apply online for a copy of a certificate.

    Application for late registration only should be made to:

    General Register Office

    Government Offices
    Convent Road
    F42 VX53

    This article explains how to request access to or delete someone’s Apple ID and the data stored with it after they have passed away.

    Every day, people all over the world save important documents, memories and more on their Apple devices and in iCloud. At Apple, we consider privacy to be a fundamental human right, and our users expect us to help keep their information private and secure at all times. In the unfortunate event of a customer’s death, Apple provides options for their loved ones to request access to or delete their Apple ID and the data stored with it.

    While we may also be able to help remove Activation Lock from devices that use your loved one’s original Apple ID, their iPhone, iPod and iPad will need to be restored to factory settings before they can be used with another Apple ID. Please note that devices locked with a passcode are protected by passcode encryption, and Apple can’t help with removing the passcode lock without erasing the device.

    For security, Apple requires and verifies legal documentation before we can assist with a deceased person’s account. This generally includes a death certificate, and may also require a court order or other documentation. The requirements vary by country and region. We have great sympathy for surviving family members and try to help with requests as much and as quickly as possible.

    If you have a Legacy Contact access key

    Starting from iOS 15.2, iPadOS 15.2 and macOS 12.1, Apple users can add a Legacy Contact for their Apple ID. Adding a Legacy Contact is the easiest, most secure way to give someone they trust access to the data they stored in their Apple account after they pass away.

    If you’re a Legacy Contact for a family member or friend who passed away – and you have both the unique access key they created when they added you as a Legacy Contact and their death certificate – you can start a request on your device* or on the Digital Legacy – Request Access page.

    If you don’t have a Legacy Contact access key, you can still ask to delete an account or request access to an account using the options below.

    If you want to delete an Apple ID permanently

    If you’d like to request the permanent deletion of an Apple ID and data for someone who has passed away, you’ll need your Apple ID, the Apple ID for the account you want to delete and the required legal documentation for your country or region.

    You can start a request to delete a deceased person’s Apple ID on the Digital Legacy – Delete Apple ID page.

    If you’re not sure whether the email address that you have for the deceased person is associated with an Apple ID, you can use to check. If you don’t have an Apple ID of your own, you can create one.

    Request access with a court order or other legal documentation

    In the US and other locations, you can request access to a deceased person’s Apple ID and data with a court order that names you as the rightful inheritor of your loved one’s personal information. In some jurisdictions, such as France, Germany, Japan, Australia and New Zealand, alternative documentation and process instead of a court order are accepted.

    Where applicable, the court order needs to specify:

    • The name and Apple ID of the deceased person.
    • The name of the next of kin who is requesting access to the deceased’s account.
    • That the deceased was the user of all accounts associated with the Apple ID.
    • That the requestor is the deceased’s legal personal representative, agent or heir, whose authorisation constitutes “lawful consent”.
    • That Apple is ordered by the court to assist in the provision of access to the deceased’s information from the deceased person’s accounts. The court order should be addressed to the relevant Apple entity.

    If you have a court order with this information, or if you need additional help, please contact Apple Support.

    About estate planning

    We encourage Apple users to consider adding a Legacy Contact for your Apple ID* or an inheritance plan to your will that covers the personal information you store on your devices and in iCloud.

    This can simplify the process of acquiring a legal order and reduce delay and frustration for family members during a difficult time.

    Learn more

    • Find out how to add a Legacy Contact for your Apple ID.
    • Find out what you should know if you were added as a Legacy Contact.
    • Find out how to remove Activation Lock.

    * To add a Legacy Contact, store a Legacy Contact access key or make a Legacy Contact request on your device, you need a device with iOS 15.2, iPadOS 15.2 or macOS 12.1 or later.

    Information about products not manufactured by Apple, or independent websites not controlled or tested by Apple, is provided without recommendation or endorsement. Apple assumes no responsibility with regard to the selection, performance or use of third-party websites or products. Apple makes no representations regarding third-party website accuracy or reliability. Contact the vendor for additional information.

    What Is Grief?

    Grief is the reaction we have in response to a death or loss. Grief can affect our body, mind, emotions, and spirit.

    People might notice or show grief in several ways:

    • Physical reactions: These might be things like changes in appetite or sleep, an upset stomach, tight chest, crying, tense muscles, trouble relaxing, low energy, restlessness, or trouble concentrating.
    • Frequent thoughts: These may be happy memories of the person who died, worries or regrets, or thoughts of what life will be like without the person.
    • Strong emotions: For example, sadness, anger, guilt, despair, relief, love, or hope.
    • Spiritual reactions: This might mean finding strength in faith, questioning religious beliefs, or discovering spiritual meaning and connections.

    When people have these reactions and emotions, we say they’re grieving.

    The Grieving Process

    Grief is a reaction to loss, but it’s also the name we give to the process of coping with the loss of someone who has died. Grief is a healthy process of feeling comforted, coming to terms with a loss, and finding ways to adapt.

    Getting over grief doesn’t mean forgetting about a person who has died. Healthy grief is about finding ways to remember loved ones and adjust to life without them present.

    People often experience grief reactions in “waves” that come and go. Often, grief is most intense soon after someone has died. But some people don’t feel their grief right away. They may feel numbness, shock, or disbelief. It can take time for the reality to sink in that the person is gone.

    Grief Rituals

    Rituals, like memorial services and funerals, allow friends and family to get together to support and comfort the people most affected by the loss. These activities can help people get through the first days after a death and honor the person who died.

    People might spend time together talking and sharing memories about their loved one. This may continue for days or weeks following the loss as friends and family bring food, send cards, or stop by to visit.

    Many times, people show their emotions during this time, like crying. But sometimes people can be so shocked or overwhelmed by the death that they don’t show any emotion right away — even though the loss is very hard. People might smile and talk with others at a funeral as if nothing happened, but they’re still sad. Being among other mourners can be a comfort, reminding us that some things will stay the same.

    When the rituals end, some people might think they should be over their grief. But often the grief process is just beginning. People may go back to their normal activities but find it hard to put their heart into everyday things. Although they may not talk about their loss as much, the grieving process continues.

    Feeling Better

    If someone you know has died, it’s natural to keep having feelings and questions for a while. It’s also natural to begin to feel a bit better. A lot depends on how a loss affects your life.

    It’s OK to feel grief for days, weeks, or even longer. How intensely you feel grief can be related to things like whether the loss was sudden or expected, or how close you felt to the person who died. Every person and situation is different.

    Feeling better usually happens gradually. At times, it might feel like you’ll never recover. The grieving process takes time, and grief can be more intense at some times than others.

    As time goes on, reminders of the person who has died can intensify feelings of grief. At other times, it might feel as if grief is in the background of your normal activities, and not on your mind all the time.

    As you do things you enjoy and spend time with people you feel good around, you can help yourself feel better. Grief has its own pace. Every situation is different. How much grief you feel or how long it lasts isn’t a measure of how important the person was to you.

    Helping Yourself

    If you’re grieving, it can help to express your feelings and get support, take care of yourself, and find meaning in the experience.

    Express Feelings and Find Support

    Take a moment to notice how you’ve been feeling and reacting. Try to put it into words. Write about what you’re feeling and the ways you’re reacting to grief. Notice how it feels to think about and write about your experience.

    Think of someone you can share your feelings with, someone who will listen and understand. Find time to talk to that person about what you’re going through and how the loss is affecting you. Notice how you feel after sharing and talking.

    We can learn a lot from the people in our lives. Even when you don’t feel like talking, it can help just to be with others who also loved the person who died. When family and friends get together, it helps people feel less isolated in the first days and weeks of their grief. Being with others helps you, and your presence — and words — can support them, too.

    Find Meaning

    We can learn from loss and difficult experiences. Think about what you’ve discovered about yourself, about others, or about life as a result of going through this loss. To help get started, you can try writing down answers to these questions:

    • What did the person mean to you?
    • What did you learn from him or her?
    • What good has come from this difficult experience?
    • What have you learned about yourself, other people, or life?
    • Are there things you appreciate more?
    • Who are the people who have been there for you? Were they the people you expected? What have you learned about them?
    • In what ways have you grown or matured based on this experience?

    Take Care of Yourself

    The loss of someone close to you can be stressful. Take care of yourself in small but important ways:

    • Sleep. Sleep is healing for both body and mind, but grief can disrupt sleep patterns. Focus on building healthy sleep habits, like going to bed at the same time each night or establishing bedtime routines like doing gentle yoga or breathing exercises.
    • Exercise.Exercise can help your mood. It may be hard to get motivated when you’re grieving, so modify your usual routine if you need to. Even a gentle walk outdoors can help to reset your perspective on things.
    • Eat right. You may feel like skipping meals or you may not feel hungry. Your body still needs nutritious foods, though. Avoid overeating, loading up on junk foods, or using alcohol to “soothe” your grief.

    Grief is a normal emotion. It can help to know that you will always remember the person you lost, but you can feel better with time.

    How to tell if someone is dead

    Erick Munoz stands by a photo of his wife, Marlise Munoz, at home in Fort Worth, Texas, on Jan. 3. She is being kept on life support in a local hospital against the family’s wishes. Fort Worth Star-Telegram/MCT via Getty Images hide caption

    Death seems one of life’s few certainties, but the cases of a girl and a young woman who are being kept on life support even though they are legally dead show how difficult it still can be to agree on the end of life.

    In Oakland, Calif., the family of 13-year-old Jahi McMath waged a legal battle to override at least three neurologists who said that the child died when her brain lost all function after complications from a tonsillectomy. Though a coroner has issued an official death certificate for her, Jahi’s family won the right to keep their child on a ventilator.

    The husband and parents of 33-year-old Marlise Munoz in Fort Worth, Texas, were ready to accept their loss when doctors declared her brain dead after a suspected brain embolism. But Munoz was 14 weeks pregnant when she was afflicted. Because of that, the hospital has refused to remove her from a ventilator, despite her loved ones’ wishes.

    Both cases run counter to a definition of death that has been used for decades, with rare exceptions. If a person experiences the “irreversible cessation of all functions of the brain,” he or she is considered legally dead.

    What’s confusing is that someone who is brain dead can look and feel alive — they can keep breathing with the help of a ventilator, and their hearts can keep beating. Given the right treatment, many of their bodily functions can stay intact for weeks and months after they are considered medically and legally dead.

    “Many people confuse brain death with coma, vegetative state or other disorders of consciousness,” says Dr. James Bernat, a neurologist who directs the clinical ethics program at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center and serves on the World Health Organization committee on standards for death determination.

    “In a coma or vegetative state, a person is alive,” Bernat tells Shots. In both cases, there’s evidence of neurological function – patients can usually breathe on their own, their reflexes might still be intact and they might respond to outside stimuli.

    How to tell if someone is dead

    Nailah Winkfield, mother of 13-year-old Jahi McMath, at a court hearing on Dec. 20, 2013, in Oakland, Calif. The family opposed hospital efforts to disconnect Jahi from life support, even though she was declared brain dead. Ben Margot/AP hide caption

    “In brain death, there is zero brain function,” Bernat says.

    Doctors use a slew of different tests to determine if a person is brain dead. They test reflexes and see if the patient tries to breathe when carbon dioxide levels in the blood increase. If the patient shows no signs of brain function throughout these tests, they are officially brain dead.

    A brain-dead person can never recover, Bernat says. The best doctors can do at that point is to offer compassion. That might mean keeping the patient on a ventilator until the family says its goodbyes.

    It might also mean suggesting that the family donate their loved one’s organs to save someone else’s life, Bernat says. “Studies have shown that this is something that can create some good out of an otherwise tragic situation.”

    Indeed, explaining the situation to family members can be the biggest challenge for doctors, says Arthur Caplan, who heads the bioethics division at New York University Langone Medical Center.

    “I think some of the difficulty in medicine is not uncertainty about brain death or when death comes, it’s about how to manage it,” Caplan tells Shots.

    While hospitals should give families time to say goodbye, Caplan says, they also shouldn’t keep these patients on ventilators indefinitely.

    In McMath’s case, Caplan says, “I think doctors or nurses or facilities who . keep dealing with this body to keep maintaining the appearance of life, they really ought to be investigated because they’re not acting in an ethical manner. They’re not letting the family come to an acceptance of what has happened.”

    Media coverage of brain death can cloud public understanding, Caplan says. “I’ve seen headlines that have said ‘Little girl brain dead, now pronounced dead,’ ” he says. “That gives the suggestion that maybe brain death isn’t death.”

    And beyond legal and medical definitions, life and death are rarely simple or clear-cut. Just ask any poet or philosopher.

    “The fight over what it means to be dead is essentially a philosophical or religious fight,” says Robert Veatch, a professor of medical ethics at Georgetown University’s Kennedy Institute of Ethics. “In many ways,” he says, “it’s the abortion question at the other end of life.”

    To reflect that, two states, New York and New Jersey, allow doctors and hospitals take into account families’ religious and moral views in determining death.

    “At least in New Jersey there can be living people with dead brains,” Veatch tells Shots. A coroner can choose to hold off on declaring that a brain-dead person is dead if the family objects to that definition of death for religious reasons.

    In effect, Veatch says, as long as the family members are able to pay to keep a brain-dead relative on the ventilator, legally they can do so for as long as they’d like.

    There are three main schools of thought on death, Veatch says. There’s the commonly accepted view that a person is dead when all brain functions cease. But there’s also the view that a person is only dead after their heart stops beating. That’s the view held by many Orthodox Jews and Native Americans, as well as some Catholics and fundamental Protestants, Veatch says.

    And there’s a third variation. While most definitions of brain death mean that all parts of a person’s brain are out of commission, Veatch and some others believe that a person can be brain dead even if certain minor functions of the brain remain. For example, if a patient shows a gag reflex, but no other signs of life, they should be considered brain dead.

    Though most laws and medical practices are based on the definition that equates total loss of brain function to death, Veatch says, “There’s nothing illogical or unscientific about choosing either of the other two groups of concepts of death.”

    It makes sense to let families choose between the three definitions, he says. “I don’t see any reason why we will ever have unanimous agreement on that question.”

    When you’re trying to find someone online, Google’s not the only game in town. In the last two years, a handful of new people search engines have come onto the scene that offer better ways to pinpoint people info by name, handle, location, or place of employment. While there’s still no killer, one-stop people search, there are more ways than ever to track down a long-lost friend, stalk an ex, or screen a potential date or employee. The next time you wonder, “What ever happened to so-and-so?” you’ve got a few power people search tools to turn to.

    Note: Stalking is serious business. When we say ‘stalk,’ we’re exaggerating, not recommending.

    Find Phone Numbers and Addresses with ZabaSearch

    Look up anyone’s home address(es) and phone numbers at ZabaSearch , a creepily-comprehensive people search engine that will freak you out when you search on your own name but save your ass when you desperately need a former coworker’s phone number. ZabaSearch’s index includes listed and unlisted numbers and addresses (though the founders say all the info is public record.)

    ZabaSearch people search

    Recently-launched Zaba Search uncovers a whole lot of information about people given their first…

    How to tell if someone is dead

    Microsoft Office Professional 2021 for Windows: Lifetime License

    Get smart
    Enjoy Microsoft’s suite of essentials with a one-time purchase and installation, as opposed to that fee you’re paying every month.

    Search the “Deep Web” with Pipl

    My favorite new search engine of the bunch, Pipl digs up information about a person Google often misses, supposedly by searching the “deep web” (or ” invisible web .”) Pipl returns an impressive number of results for most people who use their “real” names online, including personal web pages, press mentions, MySpace pages, and Amazon wishlists. You can also narrow your search for common names by entering city, state and country, too.

    Special: Seek and Ye Shall Find

    by Wendy Boswell

    Search Several Social Sites at Once with Wink

    So the person you’re looking for likely has a Friendster, LinkedIn, MySpace, Twitter, or Xanga account? Instead of searching each service individually, enter their full name or screen name, plus other identifying information like interests and location at Wink to do a one-hit comprehensive search of all those services at once.

    Get Employment Results at ZoomInfo

    Job-centric search engine ZoomInfo aggregates people and company information in one place to help candidates find the right job, but its people search tool also turns up information about corporate types especially well. ZoomInfo’s information listings on people, culled from the web, include people’s employment history and current job title, whether or not they’re looking for a job. Search by a person’s full name at ZoomInfo, and when you get too many results, filter them by geography (U.S. and Canada only.)

    Find More than College Students at Facebook

    Incessant notifications, Beacon, and zombies aside, one of Facebook ‘s greatest utilities is finding people online, and it’s not just for students anymore. Chances are your grandmother set up a Facebook account this year, so all those annoying emails might be worth tracking down your best friend when you were 9 years old who moved to Florida on Facebook.

    Practice Your Google-fu for Better People Results

    Okay, fine, you can’t talk finding people online without mentioning the big G. For internet superstars you’ll get great results by just typing his/her name into Google’s search box, but for civilians, common names or names with double meanings, a few advanced Google techniques can help narrow down the field of results.

    • Enclose the first and last name of the person you’re searching for in quotes when you enter it into the search box (like “John Smith”).
    • Include other relevant words, like the person’s profession, employer, location, or screen name, too (like banker or Austin, Texas.)
    • If the person you’re searching for is likely to appear on a particular web site—like a school—search only that site using the site:URL operator (like “John Smith”).
    • To look up people by face, search for them on Google Images to get a quick visual—especially useful for people with common names, or to determine the gender of a name you never heard before.

    Get Context-Menu Access to People Search Engines with the Who Is This Person? Firefox extension

    Finally, if you run across folks online you want to know more about often, search a ton of engines for someone’s name with the Who Is This Person? Firefox extension . Simply highlight the name on any web page and look ’em up on Wink, LinkedIn, Wikipedia, Facebook, Google News, Technorati, Yahoo Person Search, Spock, WikiYou, ZoomInfo, IMDB, MySpace and other engines from the Who Is This Person? context menu item.

    For more online sleuthing resources, check out Wendy’s great tutorial on searching public records online . To make yourself more findable? Have a say in what Google says about you . Also, many of these services let you “claim” your name and add information to your results. Do a search for your own name and click the link that says, in effect, “Is this you?”

    Where to Find Public Records Online

    You can use the internet to find almost anything: a good restaurant, a recording of a…

    Does the current crop of people search engines make you want to change your name, fail you entirely, or help you get in touch? Let us know what you think in the comments.

    Gina Trapani , the editor of Lifehacker, likes to find and be found. Her weekly feature, Geek to Live , appears every Friday on Lifehacker. Subscribe to the Geek to Live feed to get new installments in your newsreader.

    Suicidal thoughts can be complex, frightening and confusing.

    We’re not afraid of going into difficult areas with you, and we’ll take you seriously whether you’re having a few suicidal thoughts or have made clear plans to end your life.

    Call us now for free on 116 123

    More about calling us

    I want to die. How will talking help me?

    We’re experienced in listening to people with suicidal thoughts, feelings and plans and are here to support you:

    • when you’re desperate or on edge, we can help you get through that moment
    • we’ll help you make sense of what you’re feeling
    • we can identify other forms of help if you think you want it.

    They are there when all your friends are asleep and you are alone in the world, full of thoughts.

    Am I suicidal?

    You might be experiencing some of the following suicidal thoughts and feelings:

    • feel sure that you want to die
    • desperately want a solution to your nightmare and can’t see any other way out
    • don’t care if you live or die and are taking more risks or living recklessly
    • don’t actively want to kill yourself but would welcome death if it happened. You might view death as a release or way of taking control
    • don’t know why you are having suicidal thoughts or suicidal feelings, and are completely powerless to know what to do about it.

    We can talk with you through all of this.

    Will you stop me killing myself?

    We hope that, through talking to us, you’ll get to a place where you see your situation in a different light.

    If you are not a child or adult at risk, we respect your freedom to make your own decisions, including the decision to take your own life. We’ll continue to talk with you if you’ve taken action to end your life.

    Will you tell anybody I’m suicidal?

    In most situations and for most people we are a confidential service and we won’t ever tell anyone about our conversation, or even that you called, unless you ask us to. However, there are important exceptions to this.

    We won’t call emergency services, except for in these circumstances:

    • You ask us to, and you’re unable to call for yourself
    • You’ve already told us your address, location or phone number, and then become incoherent or unconscious during the call
    • You’re in one of our branches, and you’ve harmed yourself in a way that puts you in danger at that time
    • You are a child or an adult at risk
    • Your situation fits one of the reasons why we cannot maintain confidentiality

    What if I don’t want to talk on the phone?

    There are other ways to contact us if you prefer not to talk on the phone.

    Confidence is too often mistaken for competence. Don’t be taken in: Follow these tips.

    How to tell if someone is dead

    It doesn’t take much experience of the world of work to figure out that it’s not always the most competent people who rise to the top. Nor is the fact that someone has a strong opinion on a subject a reliable indicator that they know anything much about it.

    In short, blowhards often manage to sell themselves as skilled, and overconfidence is frequently rewarded. (If you doubt the evidence of your own eyes on this point, there’s plenty of scientific evidence to back it up.)

    So how can you avoid being taken in by the loud and self-assured, especially when you’re not an expert in a field yourself? What are the best ways to quickly and accurately sort the genuinely competent from the merely confident?

    Writing on Quora recently, Shane Parrish, the entrepreneur and thinker behind the Farnam Street blog, offered a list of helpful suggestions he has compiled over the years. With these tricks, he claims, you can learn “how to separate the copycats and mimics from the real deal.” Here they are:

    1. Elon Musk on How to Tell if People Are Lying: “When I interview someone . [I] ask them to tell me about the problems they worked on and how they solved them. And if someone was really the person that solved it, they will be able to answer at multiple levels–they will be able to go down to the brass tacks. And if they weren’t, they’ll get stuck. And then you can say, ‘oh this person was not really the person who solved it because anyone who struggles hard with a problem never forgets it.'”
    2. Consider the time scales they operate under. The shorter the axis they work on, the more likely they are a mimic.
    3. They’re able to delay gratification (drugs, sex, etc.).
    4. They can simplify and deep dive.
    5. They have the ability to walk you through things step by step, without requiring great leaps.
    6. They spend a lot of time reading.
    7. Intelligent people normally get excited when you ask them why or how, whereas mimics normally get frustrated.
    8. Look at whom they hang around with.
    9. They can argue the other side of an idea better than the people who disagree with them.
    10. They know how to focus and typically create large chunks of time.
    11. They don’t waste a lot of time.
    12. They’ve failed.

    What are your own tricks and tells to sort the genuinely smart from the merely overconfident?

    More In File

    • Individuals
    • Businesses and Self-Employed
      • Small Business and Self-Employed
        • Employer ID Numbers
        • Business Taxes
        • Reporting Information Returns
        • Self-Employed
        • Starting a Business
        • Operating a Business
        • Closing a Business
          • Probate, Filing Estate and Individual Returns, Paying Taxes Due
        • Industries/Professions
        • Small Business Events
        • Online Learning
      • Large Business
      • Corporations
      • Partnerships
    • Charities and Nonprofits
    • International Taxpayers
    • Governmental Liaisons
    • Federal State Local Governments
    • Indian Tribal Governments
    • Tax Exempt Bonds

    This page provides information to help you resolve the final tax issues of a deceased person and their estate. As the surviving spouse, executor, estate administrator or other legal representative of a deceased person and their estate, you will have many responsibilities.

    Deceased Persons – Getting Information from the IRS
    Find out how to receive tax information of a decedent or their estate.

    Understanding the General Duties as an Estate Administrator
    Learn about the general responsibilities of the legal representative for the decedent and his or her estate.

    Filing the Final Return(s) of a Deceased Person
    Learn about filing requirements, getting transcripts and payment arrangements.

    Filing the Estate Income Tax Return (Form 1041)
    Explanation of filing requirements and how to get an EIN for the estate.

    Selling Real Property that is Part of the Decedent’s Estate
    Provides instructions on how to obtain a release of lien on the decedent’s property.

    Protecting the Deceased’s Identity from ID Theft
    Tips to reduce the risk of having a deceased person’s identity stolen.

    Filing Estate and/or Gift Tax Returns (Forms 706 or 709)
    Provides links to various topics on Estate and Gift tax issues.

    Getting an International Estate Transfer Certificate
    Provides an explanation of the Transfer Certificate and how to obtain one.

    Osteonecrosis is bone death caused by poor blood supply. It is most common in the hip and shoulder but can affect other large joints such as the knee, elbow, wrist, and ankle.


    Osteonecrosis occurs when part of the bone does not get blood flow and dies. After a while, the bone can collapse. If osteonecrosis is not treated, the joint deteriorates, leading to severe arthritis.

    Osteonecrosis can be caused by disease or by severe trauma, such as a fracture or dislocation, that affects the blood supply to the bone. Osteonecrosis can also occur without trauma or disease. This is called idiopathic — meaning it occurs without any known cause.

    The following are possible causes:

    • Using oral or intravenous steroids
    • Excessive alcohol use
    • Sickle cell disease
    • Dislocation or fractures around a joint
    • Clotting disorders
    • HIV or taking HIV drugs
    • Radiation therapyВ or chemotherapy
    • Gaucher disease (disease in which harmful substances build-up in certain organs and the bones)
    • Systemic lupus erythematosus (an autoimmune disease in which the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy tissue such as the skin, joints, and certain organs)
    • Legg-Calve-Perthes disease (childhood disease in which the thigh bone in the hip doesn’t get enough blood, causing the bone to die)
    • Decompression sickness from a lot of deep sea diving

    When osteonecrosis occurs in the shoulder joint, it is usually due to long-term treatment with steroids, a history of trauma to the shoulder, or the person has sickle cell disease.


    There are no symptoms in the early stages. As bone damage worsens, you may have the following symptoms:

    • Pain in the joint that may increase over time and becomes severe if the bone collapses
    • Pain that occurs even at rest
    • Limited range of motion
    • Groin pain, if the hip joint is affected
    • Limping, if the condition occurs in the leg
    • Difficulty with overhead movement, if the shoulder joint is affected
    • Worsening arthritic symptoms in the joint when the condition deteriorates

    Exams and Tests

    Your health care provider will do a physical exam to find out if you have any diseases or conditions that may affect your bones. You will be asked about your symptoms and medical history.

    Be sure to let your provider know about any medicines or vitamin supplements you are taking, even over-the-counter medicine.

    After the exam, your provider will order one or more of the following tests:


    If your provider knows the cause of osteonecrosis, part of the treatment will be aimed at the underlying condition. For example, if a blood clotting disorder is the cause, treatment will consist, in part, of clot-dissolving medicine.

    If the condition is caught early, you will take pain relievers and limit use of the affected area. This may include using crutches if your hip, knee, or ankle is affected. You may need to do range-of-motion exercises. Nonsurgical treatment can often slow the progression of osteonecrosis, but most people will need surgery.

    Surgical options include:

    • A bone graft
    • A bone graft along with its blood supply (vascularized bone graft)
    • Removing part of the inside of the bone (core decompression) to relieve pressure and allow new blood vessels to form
    • Cutting the bone and changing its alignment to relieve stress on the bone or joint (osteotomy)
    • Replacing the deteriorated part with a donor osteochondral allograft
    • Total joint replacement

    Support Groups

    More information and support for people with osteonecrosis and their families can be found at:

    • National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases —
    • The Arthritis Foundation —

    Outlook (Prognosis)

    How well you do depends on the following:

    • The cause of the osteonecrosis
    • How severe the disease is when diagnosed
    • Amount of bone involved
    • Your age and overall health

    Outcome may vary from complete healing to permanent damage in the affected bone.

    Possible Complications

    Advanced osteonecrosis can lead to osteoarthritis and permanent decreased mobility. Severe cases may require joint replacement.

    When to Contact a Medical Professional

    Call your provider if you have symptoms.


    Many cases of osteonecrosis do not have a known cause, so prevention may not be possible. In some cases, you can reduce your risk by doing the following:

    • Avoid drinking excessive amounts of alcohol.
    • When possible, avoid high doses and long-term use of corticosteroids.
    • Follow safety measures when diving to avoid decompression sickness.

    Alternative Names

    Avascular necrosis; Bone infarction; Ischemic bone necrosis; AVN; Aseptic necrosis

    How to tell if someone is dead

    FamilySearch’s Family Treeis all about discovering and making connections. Many people on FamilySearch find these connections by uncovering records and finding new ancestors or finding new information others have posted. But you can also make connections to your living family on FamilySearch—especially as it grows!

    When you add new members to your family, such as spouses, in-laws, stepparents, etc.,these new additions can come with their own separate family trees. Connecting to the tree information for living family members on the FamilySearch Family Tree isn’t difficult—but it does require a little different approach.

    Protecting the Privacy of Living Family Members

    FamilySearch Family Tree is a shared, public tree. Information about deceased relatives can be seen by anyone who searches for that relative on FamilySearch. To protect privacy, any information about living people on the Family Tree can only be seen by the person who entered it, in his or her private space.

    As an example, I entered my husband, children, and parents on my family tree.Nobody else can see the information I entered because they are all living.

    Information added to a living relative’s profile will only become public after he or she is marked as deceased. At that time, duplicate profiles may appear and can be merged to group that person’s information into one shared profile.

    This means that if my siblings want to see our parents (who are living) on their own tree, they have to enter our parents themselves.

    Connecting Trees of Living People

    Because of this respect for privacy, connecting to information in the tree about your spouse or other living family members works a little differently than connecting to deceased ancestors in your direct line. The key is adding information about your living relatives until you can connect to the profile for a deceased person.

    How to tell if someone is dead

    Below is an example of how to connect a spouse’s tree—but the steps would work for connecting to the tree information for any living person.

    1) From the Family Tree screen, find the place you want to add a living relative.

    In this example, I want to connect Heather to her living spouse, John, so I can see his family line that stretches back many generations. So I navigate to Heather’s profile in my Family Tree.

    How to tell if someone is dead

    2) Add information about the living relative.

    To do this for John, I start by clicking Add Spouse next to Heather’s name.(If the option to add a relative doesn’t appear on the tree view, I can also add family members on Heather’s person page and then come back to the Tree.)

    How to tell if someone is dead

    I then fill in basic information about him and click Next. On the summary screen that appears, I click Create Person to add John to my tree view. On Heather’s family tree, John will now appear as her husband.

    How to tell if someone is dead

    How to tell if someone is dead

    Remember that even though John can already see his information in his own tree view, creating a duplicate profile is necessary because living information is not shared. The record of John I create will only be visible in my own private space—so long as his status is marked as living.

    3) Add information about other living relatives.

    John’s parents, Liam and Emma, are still alive, so I click on Add Mother and Add Father to create new records and add these relatives toHeather’s tree in my private space.I can also do the same for John’s other living relatives.

    How to tell if someone is dead

    4) Connect to deceased ancestors.

    Once I have entered in the information for the living people on this branch of the tree, I am ready to connect to deceased relatives. In our example, Emma’s mother is deceased and already in FamilySearch. I click Add Mother and type in Margaret Brown, born in 1924 in Kentucky.

    Note: If I already know the ID number of the person I am searching for, I can choose to enter that instead.

    How to tell if someone is dead

    How to tell if someone is dead

    Once I click Next,FamilySearch shows me possible matches that it finds in the Family Tree.

    How to tell if someone is dead

    One of these possibilities is a match, so I could click Add Match. Before I do, I also notice that one option allows me to add Margaret Brown and her husband, Soloman, at the same time, so I choose Add Couple Match to add both relatives to my tree view. Once I do that, FamilySearch will connect them toHeather’s tree information—along with all their ancestors.

    Now John’s family tree on his mother’s side is successfully connected with Heather’s family tree. To add John’s father’s side, I can repeat the same steps.

    How to tell if someone is dead

    Ready to do this on your own? Go to the FamilySearch Family Tree,and give it a try!