How do you have someone declared dead?

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How do you have someone declared dead?

My son’s father has been missing for over a year, missing persons and the FBI have exhausted all leads from what I have been told by the detective. He had serious breathing problems that he needed medication for and without access to his meds he would not survive

an attack without intervention. I would like to know what rights I have to have him declared dead on my son’s behalf and how I can go about this?

Asked on August 4, 2016 under Estate Planning, Florida

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

There is a legal presumption that a erson is alive until proved dead. Where evidence indicates that an absent person was subject to a particular peril, they will be legally presumed dead after a certain eriod time as established by state statute. In no event will a court make the assumption that a person is dead unless it is reasonable to assume so. So for example, a missing person will not be declared legally dead without proof that a genuine and thorough search was made for them.
Based on the limited facts given, having your husband declared legally dead may be problematic. While there appears to have been a legitimate investigatin into his disapearance and there was a peril involved (his not having his medication), he has been only missing for 1 year and in FL a person must be missing for at least 5 years before they can be decared dead. Without knowing more details of the situation, it's hard to say more. At this point you should consult directly with an attorney in your area for further advice.


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