Human Tissue Authority

The regulator for human tissue and organs

Qualifying relationships

If the deceased person has not indicated their consent (or refusal) to post mortem removal, storage or use of their body or tissue for scheduled purposes, nor appointed a nominated representative, then the appropriate consent can be given by someone in a ‘qualifying relationship’ to the deceased immediately before their death.

Those in a qualifying relationship to the deceased person are (highest first):

  1. spouse or partner (including civil or same sex partner)
  2. parent or child (in this context a ‘child’ can be any age)
  3. brother or sister
  4. grandparent or grandchild
  5. niece or nephew
  6. stepfather or stepmother
  7. half-brother or half-sister
  8. friend of long standing
Last updated on: 16 Jan 2015