How can i get my baby’s ashes back?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

How can i get my baby’s ashes back?

Last June, I had a stillborn child who I chose to cremate. I gave half of the ashes to the father, who is now in jail pending trial. Since his arrest, his mother has held onto the ashes while refusing to give them to me. The father and I were never married, so he isn’t on her stillbirth certificate. Is there anything I can legally do to get back her ashes?

Asked on February 22, 2019 under Estate Planning, Tennessee


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

First, please accept our condolences and sympathy for your loss.
Unfortunately, there is nothing you can do. Once you give or "gift" anything--including remains, like ashes--to another person, you lose all right to or interest in them. They belong to the recipient, to do with as he/she wants, including giving them to another (e.g. his mother). You gave up your right to the ashes when you gave half to the father.

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 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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption