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Death Abroad

Reporting the Death of a U.S. Citizen Abroad

The death of a loved one is difficult, especially if you are not familiar with the laws and procedures of the local country.  The U.S. Embassy in Reykjavik provides guidance to grieving family members on how to make arrangements for local burial or return of the remains to the United States.  The disposition of remains is affected by local laws, customs, and facilities, which may be vastly different from those in the U.S.

Who Do I Contact If an American Dies in Iceland?

You should report the death of an American citizen in Iceland to the American Citizen Services (ACS) unit as soon as possible.  The death can be reported during working hours (8:00 to 17:00 Monday to Friday) by calling +354-562-9100.  If the death is the result of an emergency situation that occurs outside of regular working hours, please contact the Embassy Duty Officer at +354-693-9207 (dial 011 first if calling from the U.S.).

Role of the Embassy When an American Dies in Iceland

In the event that an American citizen dies in Iceland there are several things the U.S. Embassy in Reykjavik may do to assist the grieving family members.  In cases where the deceased American has no close family in Iceland at the time of death, the U.S. Embassy will notify the next-of-kin about the death and secure the deceased American's personal effects.  The U.S. Embassy will provide guidance tot he next-of-kin on how to make arrangements for local burial or return of remains to the United States and can relay instructions for disposition of remains to the local funeral home.  In all instances, the U.S. Embassy prepares an official Foreign Service Report of Death. based upon the local death certificate, and sends it to the next-of-kin or legal representative for use in U.S. courts to settle estate matters.

The U.S. Embassy has no funds to assist in the return of remains or ashes of the American citizens who die abroad.


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