OCME's responsibility as the City mortuary includes caring for all remains in our custody with dignity and respect. There may be times in this work when remains are unidentified and/or unclaimed.
Unidentified and/or unclaimed remains are interred in City Cemetery on Hart Island within a reasonable period of time. If remains are subsequently identified, or if a family later wishes to claim their loved one, the remains can be disinterred for private burial.
Family members and their invited guests can visit those interred on Hart Island by making arrangements in advance with the New York City Department of Correction (DOC), the agency responsible for maintaining the Island. For more information about the gravesite visit process, and to fill out a visit request form, please check with DOC.
The Hart Island burial site visits for family members and their invited guests described above are being provided pursuant to a proposed class action settlement agreement. Please see the Notice at the link below for more detailed information about the agreement, instructions to class members on how to inform the Court of any objection you may have to the settlement, and information about a fairness hearing to be held on December 9, 2015, at which the Court will consider any objections received, and decide whether to give final approval to the settlement.