Tex. Health & Safety Code Section 193.010
Certificate of Death by Catastrophe


(a)

In this section, “catastrophe” means the occurrence of a substantial force that causes widespread or severe damage, injury, or loss of life or property and from which it is not reasonable to assume that a person could survive, including:

(1)

flood, earthquake, tornado, or other natural disaster;

(2)

explosion, fire, or destruction of a building;

(3)

the crash of a motor vehicle, train, or airplane involving more than one person; or

(4)

the overtaking of more than one person by fire, water, earth, or other substance.

(b)

A local registrar shall issue and file a certificate of death by catastrophe for a person if:

(1)

an affidavit is submitted to the registrar stating that:

(A)

the person was last reasonably believed to be at the scene of a catastrophe;

(B)

at least 10 days have passed since the day of the catastrophe;

(C)

a diligent search has been made by a governmental authority and the authority has concluded the search for the person;

(D)

the catastrophe was not intentionally caused by the person; and

(E)

the affiant:
(i)
does not know whether the person is alive or dead;
(ii)
has not received any information about the person’s status since the catastrophe and, barring the person’s death, would have received information about the person’s status;
(iii)
is not aware of any custody or guardianship issues involving the person, if the person is a minor or a person for whom a guardian has been appointed; and
(iv)
is not aware of any reasonable motive for the person to disappear or for another person to abduct the person; and

(2)

a written statement signed by an agent of the governmental authority that conducts a search under Subdivision (1)(C) is submitted to the registrar stating that the governmental authority conducted and concluded a search for the person.

(c)

The department may issue a certificate of death by catastrophe for a minor or a person for whom a guardian has been appointed who is the subject of a custody or guardianship dispute only if all parties to the dispute submit an affidavit under Subsection (b).

(d)

An insurer shall accept as proof of death of an insured a certificate of death by catastrophe issued under this section.
Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1098, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Source: Section 193.010 — Certificate of Death by Catastrophe, https://statutes.­capitol.­texas.­gov/Docs/HS/htm/HS.­193.­htm#193.­010 (accessed Dec. 2, 2023).

Accessed:
Dec. 2, 2023

§ 193.010’s source at texas​.gov