Skip to Content
The 190th General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Section 9: Who may make anatomical gift of decedent's body or part

Section 9. (a) Subject to subsections (b) and (c) and unless otherwise prohibited by section 7 or 8, an anatomical gift of a decedent's body or part for transplantation, therapy, research or education may be made by any member of any of the following classes of individuals who is reasonably available, in the order of priority as specified below:

(1) an agent of the decedent at the time of death who could have made an anatomical gift under clause (2) of section 4 immediately before the decedent's death;

(2) the spouse of the decedent;

(3) an adult child of the decedent;

(4) a parent of the decedent;

(5) an adult sibling of the decedent;

(6) an adult grandchild of the decedent;

(7) a grandparent of the decedent;

(8) an adult who exhibited special care and concern for the decedent;

(9) a person who was acting as a guardian of the person of the decedent at the time of death; and

(10) any other person having the authority to dispose of the decedent's body.

(b) If there is more than 1 member of a class listed in clause (1), (3), (4), (5), (6), (7), (9) or (10) of subsection (a) who is entitled to make an anatomical gift, an anatomical gift may be made by a member of the class unless that member or a person to whom the gift may pass under section 11 knows of an objection by another member of the class. If an objection is known, the gift shall be made by a majority of the members of the class who are reasonably available.

(c) An individual shall not make an anatomical gift if, at the time of the decedent's death, an individual in a prior class under subsection (a) is reasonably available to make or object to the making of an anatomical gift.