Reports of Death Abroad
Death of an American Citizen
The death of an American in Ireland should be reported to the Special Consular Services (SCS) Unit of the American Citizen Services Section. If the next of kin was not with the deceased at the time of death and has not been contacted, we will notify them of the death and will work with them to carry out their wishes with regard to burial or repatriation of the deceased. If necessary, the Unit can also, with the next of kin's permission, act as a liaison between the family and local authorities. We will prepare the necessary documents to allow the family to return the remains to the United States if that is their wish. We also prepare a document called the Consular Report of Death of an American Citizen Abroad, which is based on the Irish death certificate. The Report of Death can be used in the U.S. for most legal purposes, such as filing for probate, accessing bank accounts and filing insurance claims. The deceased’s next-of-kin are responsible for paying for all funeral costs.
The SCS Unit can be contacted at 353-1-668-8777. Our 24 hour emergency number is 353-1-668-9612. We can also be reached by Email at ACSDublin@state.gov.
When the Embassy is informed of the death of an American in Ireland, we determine as quickly as possible who the next-of-kin of the deceased is and contact that person by telephone immediately. There are several important things that the next-of-kin must do in conjunction with the SCS unit.
A. Funeral Arrangements
Please note that it may take a funeral director 3-4 working days to put in place arrangements to repatriate remains or to arrange cremation.
The following general information is provided to assist families in their initial decisions. Indicated costs are estimates, based on deaths with no unusual circumstances and should be considered for guidance purposes only. These estimates also relate only to costs incurred in Ireland, (including shipping). United States funeral home costs will need to be added.
The family or legal representative must pay all funeral home expenses, shipping costs of the remains and personal effects (if applicable). The SCS Unit will work with any funeral home selected by the family to ensure proper documentation for shipment of remains to the United States. A list of funeral homes in Ireland can be accessed on the website of the Irish Association of Funeral Directors, www.rip.ie.
The total cost of preparation and burial in Ireland is approximately $4,800. The total cost for cremation and disposition of ashes in Ireland is approximately $3,000.
The total cost for preparation and air shipment to the U.S. is approximately $4,000 to $4,400. The total cost for preparation, cremation and air shipment of ashes to the U.S. is approximately $2,100. Please be aware that we do not know of any courier companies that will transport ashes. Registered mail may be used – please consult the local Irish post office on this. Local funeral directors always recommend that if possible ashes be transported by a family member as part of their hand luggage.
B. Consular Report of Death of an American Citizen Abroad
The “Consular Report of Death of an American Citizen Abroad” is an official report that provides the essential facts concerning the death of a U.S. citizen and is based on the Irish death certificate.
In order to assist families with legal matters that may arise as a result of the death of a relative in Ireland, certified copies of the “Consular Report of Death of an American Citizen Abroad” will be prepared by the U.S. Embassy in Dublin and forwarded to the next-of-kin as soon as possible. This document is in English and can generally be used in U.S. courts to help settle estate matters, bank accounts, insurance policies, and similar matters.
To complete the Report of the Death Abroad, the next-of-kin or legal representative will have to complete and submit a list of information and documents. To obtain this list, please review Information Required to Complete the Consular Report of the Death of an American Abroad webpage on this site, or call our office.
Upon its receipt, the SCS unit will prepare the “Consular Report of Death of an American Citizen Abroad” and send copies to the next-of-kin and/or legal representative. Six (or more if you desire) certified copies of the Report of Death are normally issued at the time of death, and are provided free of charge. The deceased’s U.S. passport is returned to the next-of-kin. The original death certificate is sent to the Department of State in Washington for permanent filing.
If in the future additional copies are required, submit a signed, written request including all pertinent facts along with requester's return address and telephone number. There is a $50 fee for each certified copy of Reports of Death. Please send a written request together with a check or money order made payable to the Department of State to the following address:
U.S. Department of State
Passport Services Correspondence Branch
1111 19th St., NW, Suite 510
Washington, D.C. 20522-1705
Tel: (202) 955-0307.
Please do not hesitate to contact the Special Consular Citizens Services Section at the U.S. Embassy in Dublin at ACSDublin@state.gov you have any further questions. You may also call the SCS Unit of the Embassy, Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., except on Irish and American holidays: 353-1-668-8777.
For emergency information the Embassy’s Duty Officer can be reached by telephone after working hours and on weekends by dialing: 01-668-9612 in Ireland, and 353-1-668-9612 from the United States.