If my estranged stepfather wishes to exhume my mother and move her to another cemetery against our family’s wishes, can he legally do so?

Mother died 2 years ago. My stepfather has alienated himself from the children. We do not want him buried next to our mother, so he is threatening to have her body exhumed and moved to another cemetery. The deed to the cemetery plot is held by my grandmother (mother of the deceased) and she is willing to go along with the children’s wishes.

Asked on May 22, 2012 under Family Law, Ohio


MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You need to figure out whether she had a will that changed any rights he had to allow him to make such post-death decisions. If the plot is owned by your grandmother, then the best bet is to have the grandmother fight this and you need to consult an attorney about this threatened action. 

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.