Death of a U.S. Citizen

Death is a time of crisis for family and friends no matter where it takes place.  When a death occurs overseas, the experience can be even more traumatic.

In the unfortunate event that a U.S. citizen dies in Spain or Andorra, we can help you make arrangements for return of the remains to the United States, if necessary, or for burial or cremation in Spain or Andorra.  There are, however, no U.S. government funds available to cover any of the expenses involved.  The family or legal representative must pay all funeral home charges, shipping costs for the remains and personal effects (if applicable).

Please report the death of a U.S. citizen in Spain or Andorra to us as soon as possible.  Consular staff will notify the next of kin, if necessary, and carry out their instructions regarding disposition of remains.  Depending on the circumstances, it might take until the next business day for us to provide additional information.

To report a death of a U.S. citizen in Spain please send an email to the U.S. Embassy Madrid (AskACS@state.gov), or if the death occurred in the provinces of Aragon or Catalonia, or in Andorra, to the U.S. Consulate General Barcelona (BarcelonaACS@state.gov).  Please send the information listed below with the subject line “Death of an American in Spain (or Andorra).”

  • Full name
  • Date and place of birth
  • Passport number
  • Last known residence
  • Date, place, and circumstances of death
  • If known, name, address, email address, and telephone of the next of kin and/or any relatives.
  • Whether you and/or any family members have been in contact with Spanish or Andorran authorities.

The U.S. Embassy or U.S. Consulate General will issue a Consular Report of Death Abroad based on the Spanish or Andorran death certificate.  This document is necessary to settle legal and estate matters in the United States.  For more information on this document, please see Report of Death of a U.S. Citizen Abroad.

 

Always email, but you can also call us:

  • U.S. Embassy Madrid
    +34 91-587-2200
    AskACS@state.gov
  • Barcelona Consulate General
    +34-93-280-2227
    BarcelonaACS@state.gov
    After Hours Emergencies
    +34-91-587-2200
  • U.S. Department of State Office of Overseas Citizens Services in the United States:
    From the U.S. & Canada   +1-888-407-4747
    From Overseas  +1-202-501-4444
COVID-19 or Other Communicable Diseases Deaths
CDC requirements for importing human remains depend upon if the body has been embalmed, cremated, or if the person died from a quarantinable communicable disease.

At this time, COVID-19 is a quarantinable communicable disease in the United States and the remains must meet the standards for importation found in 42 Code of Federal Regulations Part 71.55 and may be cleared, released, and authorized for entry into the United States only under the following conditions:

  • The remains are cremated; OR
  • The remains are properly embalmed and placed in a hermetically sealed casket; OR
  • The remains are accompanied by a permit issued by the CDC Director. The CDC permit (if applicable) must accompany the human remains at all times during shipment.

Permits for the importation of the remains of a person known or suspected to have died from a quarantinable communicable disease may be obtained through the CDC Division of Global Migration and Quarantine by calling the CDC Emergency Operations Center at 770-488-7100 or emailing dgmqpolicyoffice@cdc.gov.

Please see CDC’s guidance for additional information.