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Old 10-25-2020, 12:40 PM   #1
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Odd Next of Kin question

I got into a discussion about next of kin notification in a "worst case scenario" situation.
We are full-timers with South Dakota mail box address and DL's. But no ties to SD. We have no children and the neighbors of our last address would have no idea how to reach our family members. We don't do Face-book. We have asked a 1st cousin in the Navy to be our Trustee. Also, a 2nd trustee is in WA. I am also a proud vet with a VA card. I have updated the ICE in our individual phones, should they survive. We have a Next of Kin form on our fridge should it survive.



In a "worse case scenario", where we are involved in a car accident where both us die and/or major fire of the coach including wallet/purse/cell phones, ... how would our trustees be notified?


The police would know our names from the license plates, but how would our next of kin (trustees) be notified? If Barney Fife looked hard enough he "might" contact the VA for information which WOULD reveal all the next of kin information. But I have no faith the medical examiner or Barney would go the "extra mile"!


Is there some data base somewhere the police/medical examiners use that I could volunteer my information for this purpose?
What do other full-timers / homeless travelers do to ensure the next of kin is notified?
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Old 10-25-2020, 12:42 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by rhodesaz View Post
I got into a discussion about next of kin notification in a "worst case scenario" situation.
We are full-timers with South Dakota mail box address and DL's. But no ties to SD. We have no children and the neighbors of our last address would have no idea how to reach our family members. We don't do Face-book. We have asked a 1st cousin in the Navy to be our Trustee. Also, a 2nd trustee is in WA. I am also a proud vet with a VA card. I have updated the ICE in our individual phones, should they survive. We have a Next of Kin form on our fridge should it survive.



In a "worse case scenario", where we are involved in a car accident where both us die and/or major fire of the coach including wallet/purse/cell phones, ... how would our trustees be notified?


The police would know our names from the license plates, but how would our next of kin (trustees) be notified? If Barney Fife looked hard enough he "might" contact the VA for information which WOULD reveal all the next of kin information. But I have no faith the medical examiner or Barney would go the "extra mile"!


Is there some data base somewhere the police/medical examiners use that I could volunteer my information for this purpose?
What do other full-timers / homeless travelers do to ensure the next of kin is notified?
Do you own your rig outright or is it financed? If the latter, I would set up something with the financial institution, because lord knows, THEY will get involved once you start missing your payments!
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Old 10-25-2020, 12:46 PM   #3
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I think setting up your ICE contacts on your smartphone is a good start, but if you're worried about that burning up how about a small fire safe that contains your information. Make it something easy to break into though so the police can get into it. One of those plastic models maybe. And if you have a gas RV, don't store that too near the tank.
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Old 10-25-2020, 01:07 PM   #4
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That of course begs the question: if you are both dead, what do you care if they ever figure out anything?
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Old 10-25-2020, 01:21 PM   #5
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One way to avoid going into Probate, besides a Living Trust, is to set up one or more of your bank account(s) as a Pay on Death account and name a beneficiary on the account. Your bank will have this persons information in order to pay the balance to them upon your early demise. The authorities may contact your bank and will be provided this info.
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Old 10-25-2020, 04:41 PM   #6
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That of course begs the question: if you are both dead, what do you care if they ever figure out anything?
In the OP's situation, it's just them for the most part and it sounds as though they aren't even real close to their trustees. I'm probably in the minority but if this were my situation, I would not put much thought into this either.

If I was concerned enough, I'd get one of those small water/fire proof lockboxes, put my important stuff inside, and store it someplace in the rig where it'd most likely be found after an accident. I would think this would be a necessity for most anyone fulltiming anyway.
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Old 10-25-2020, 04:48 PM   #7
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That of course begs the question: if you are both dead, what do you care if they ever figure out anything?
It's sort of sick, I know, but that guy I posted about in Bremerton who died while driving his motorhome, I had this thought that hopefully the accident totaled the motorhome so that the wife would not have to step foot in it or sell it. Sometimes worse is better.
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Old 10-25-2020, 06:04 PM   #8
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Good questions. While I have our estate attorney & financial advisor (both have our next of kin contact info) in my cellphone favorites contacts, if the cellphone was destroyed along w/us, I don't know how authorities would get hold of them.

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Old 10-25-2020, 06:55 PM   #9
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There are medical ID bracelets for various illnesses. Why not have one made with an emergency contact number on it. It would give you some peace of mind if this bothers you.
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Old 10-25-2020, 07:02 PM   #10
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We carried a potable safe when FTng....still have it in S&B now
It held important info/documents (paper and copied to USB)

When we left RV to go somewhere it went with us in truck
It is 1 hr fire rated.

If both of us should die at same time then eventually someone would get curious and begin some inquires......I guess
Otherwise...both of us gone. Not too concerned after that
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Old 10-25-2020, 07:19 PM   #11
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FYI: I'm not staying up at night thinking about this. It just crossed my mind! As they say "Inquiring minds want to know!"

I thought about the safe idea. Looking into it. Not sure I'd go cheap.

We own the rig out-right and but that is a great idea. Maybe put a $1 lean on the title when registering it with the trustees name as the lean holder.

Don't wear jewelry, altho, that is a great idea.
Yes, we have a living will. Currently the will is registered in AZ (last state we lived) I will look into registering the will in SD. That would find the trustees!

Mudfrog is right, we only visit the cousins during the holidays.
For old-biscuit: I said the same thing until I realized the government would get all of my money!! Can't have that now can we?
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Old 10-25-2020, 08:05 PM   #12
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How about just letting your family members know where youíre at and where youíre heading? It gives them and the authorities a jumping off point to start checking hospitals and Coronerís offices.
When I was a cop I had to make death notifications to families who didnít even know a relative was missing or their last whereabouts. The investigative techniques are pretty good now.
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Old 10-25-2020, 08:07 PM   #13
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Oh yeah. If you have no ties to SD, canít you use a relatives residence address as your own? Register the vehicle there so if something catastrophic does happen the cops can do a knock and notice.
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Old 10-25-2020, 08:49 PM   #14
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Oh yeah. If you have no ties to SD, canít you use a relatives residence address as your own? Register the vehicle there so if something catastrophic does happen the cops can do a knock and notice.

The parents of the Navy trustee lives in a county which requires smog testing. Also, high insurance cost.
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