How to Submit an Obituary or Death Notice Online
Publishing an obituary or death notice online is a meaningful way that family members pay tribute to a loved one’s life. Online obituaries and death notices also help families announce funeral or memorial service details.
What’s the difference between an obituary and a death notice? These days, not much. Traditionally, a death notice is a paid announcement placed by the family or funeral home in a local newspaper, and an obituary is a news article about someone who has died written by a journalist. Increasingly the terms are used interchangeably, with death notice often being applied to short, fact-based announcements, and obituary used for any more detailed telling of a person’s life story.
Whether you wish to submit a short death notice or publish a longer obituary, here are the steps you will need to take. It’s common for families to submit a paid death notice or publish a loved one’s obituary in one or more newspapers and websites. We’ve included information to help you submit an obituary online, to a funeral home, and/or for print publication in a newspaper.
Submitting an Obituary or Death Notice Online
Posting an obituary or death notice online quickly distributes important information to the wider community. People can post on Facebook or Twitter about loved ones who have passed, but social media messages are fleeting. An obituary is a permanent tribute that can be visited by anyone, any time. That’s one important reason why families choose to publish an obituary.
Many families prefer their loved one’s obituary to be published both online and in print in the local newspaper. An online obituary offers convenience and ease of access, while a print newspaper obituary is a tangible memory that can be saved and cherished. Fortunately, these options are not mutually exclusive — many newspaper obituaries appear both in the print edition and on the newspaper website.
To submit an online newspaper obituary or death notice: Browse Legacy’s hundreds of newspaper partners to find your local newspaper, then click to view that paper’s specific obituary submission guidelines. Cost will vary depending on location and length of the death notice or obituary. Also, be sure ask your funeral director about the obituary — funeral homes typically file death notices and obituaries on behalf of families and may have access to better rates, or even include an online and/or print obituary in the cost of the funeral.
To post a free online obituary on Legacy.com, complete this form. We’ll verify the information submitted, then notify you when the obituary is online.
Need to find an obituary for a specific person? Legacy has the largest collection of online obituaries. Search local obituaries from hundreds of newspapers across the U.S., Canada, and around the world.
Submitting an Obituary or Death Notice to a Funeral Home
Submitting an obituary for online publication is a service provided by many funeral homes. The funeral home may include an online and/or print obituary in the cost of the funeral. Some funeral homes may charge a fee for this service. Talk with the funeral director to find out how much they charge for filing a death notice or obituary.
Funeral directors also can assist the family with writing an online obituary. Typically, the funeral director will ask questions, or have you fill out a questionnaire, to learn the details of your loved one’s life. Then they will write the obituary for you, get your feedback and approval, and then submit the obituary to the newspaper. The funeral director may also post the obituary on the funeral home’s website and/or submit to Legacy.com or similar.
Find funeral homes near you, including services provided and contact info like email address and phone number. Legacy’s funeral home directory has all the information you need to help you select the right funeral home for your family.
Submitting an Obituary to a Newspaper or Community Site
The local newspaper is still a vital source of information about who in the community has died. The newspaper obituary page, whether in print or online, is one of the most-read local news sections. Submitting an online obituary or death notice to the local paper helps get the news out to everyone who knew your loved one.
To submit an obituary to one of Legacy’s newspaper partners, first browse to find your local newspaper. Then click to view that newspaper’s obituary submission protocol. Cost varies by location and length of obituary or death announcement. Typical pricing includes a certain number of lines and characters per line, with a fee for additional lines.
Ready to publish an obituary? Choose one of 900+ leading newspapers in the United States and learn how to place an obituary for publication.
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