State of Ohio Next of Kin notification program

Next of Kin (HB 392) – This new statute creates a voluntary program, allowing those with a valid Ohio driver license, commercial driver license, temporary permit or identification card to submit two emergency contacts to the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV), to be used by law enforcement in the event they are seriously injured or killed in an automobile crash.  If the individual is involved in an emergency situation or is otherwise unable to communicate, law enforcement will use the information to notify these emergency contacts.

How do I sign up for the Next of Kin service?

Emergency contact information may be submitted online at www.bmv.ohio.gov or on the Next of Kin form (BMV 2437), either through the mail or any Deputy Registrar.  You may find the Next of Kin form online at www.bmv.ohio.gov or request it at your local Deputy Registrar.  If you choose to mail the form, please send to: Bureau of Motor Vehicles, P.O. Box 16520, Columbus, OH, 43216-6520.  You will need to submit specific identifiers for yourself so the information is accurately recorded.  This includes your Ohio Driver license or ID number, last four digits of your SSN, initials, and your date of birth.

I am under the age of 18, can I sign up for the Next of Kin program?

Yes, if you choose to participate and you are under the age of 18, one of your emergency contacts must be a parent or guardian. The second emergency contact can be someone other than a parent or guardian.

Once I have entered emergency contact information, can I change it?

Yes, you may change your next of kin information on the BMV Web site or re-submit the Next of Kin form (BMV 2437).

Who is responsible for updating my emergency contact information? For example: what if my father’s phone number has changed?

You are responsible for any updates to the next of kin information.  The BMV cannot be responsible for any changes to emergency contact information.  Please update the information on the BMV Web site or re-submit the Next of Kin form (BMV 2437).

How will the emergency contacts know I have submitted their information?

You should have concurrence from your next of kin before adding their emergency contact information.  The Ohio BMV is not liable in any way for the information provided by an individual for the Next of Kin program.

How do I remove Next of Kin information entirely?

To remove the contact information, you may do so online.  You must check the “Remove” box to entirely remove an emergency contact (do not check the “Clear” tab; this only clears the immediate information.  You must check the “Remove” box to remove a contact entirely).

Who has access to my emergency contact information?

Only authorized law enforcement and BMV personnel have access to this information.  It may only be used to contact your next of kin designations in the case you are unable to communicate due to an accident or emergency.

I do not have a valid Ohio driver license, commercial driver license, temporary permit or Ohio identification card, may I sign up for this program?

No. You must have a valid driver license, commercial driver license, temporary permit or identification card from the state of Ohio to use this service.

Is the emergency contact information public record to be made available upon request?

No, this information cannot be provided as part of a public record.  According to HB 392, next of kin information is not public record.

Can my next of kin information be sold to a company, such as a marketing or insurance company?

No, your emergency contact information cannot be bought or sold.  Because the statute specifically exempts the information from being a public record, the public cannot inquire about this information.

Who can I call if I have more questions about the Next of Kin program?

You may call us at 614-752-7600.

Information from Ohio BMV

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