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Frequently asked questions

    What is a missing person? 

    In NSW, the police definition of a missing person is: "Anyone whose current whereabouts are unknown and there are fears for their safety or concerns for the welfare of that person."

    How do I search for a missing person?

    Please see our:

    How do I report a sighting of a missing person?

    You can contact:

    How do I check if someone is listed as a police missing person?

    Try contacting the Missing Persons Unit (MPU) in the state where the person went missing or was last seen. Due to privacy legislation, police can usually only provide information to the next of kin of the missing person:

    Check relevant police websites:

    Please be aware that only matters with authority for publicity are published to police websites. To enquire about adding a profile to a police website please speak to the officer in charge of the police investigation.

    How do I get feedback about a police missing person's case?

    Speak to the police officer in charge (OIC) about the best way to access ongoing feedback about the investigation. Keep a record of important details:

    • OIC name and contact details.
    • How to access or report information when the OIC is unavailable.

    How do I get counselling support when someone is missing?

    See the Counselling and information section of this website and Contact Us for advice.

    How do I get information about the coronial process?

    Please see our Coronial information page and Contact Us if support is needed.

    How do I manage a missing person's financial affairs?

    See our Managing financial affairs page.

    I have questions about media involvement

    Families need to seek permission from the officer in charge of the investigation for media authority prior to involving media in a case. Please read:

    Someone is Missing: Can the media help you? (PDF, 158Kb) (DL brochure)

    FFMPU can offer support through the experience of engaging with media, where appropriate. If you require media support please Contact Us.

    How can I be removed from the missing person's list?

    Being a missing person is not a crime. If you are missing consider:

    • calling friends and family to let them know you are alright
    • attending any local police station in person.

    How do other families cope when a love one is missing

    You can access information about the experiences of other families in a range of our publications available on the following webpages:

    You might also consider contacting an FFMPU counsellor to explore this issue or ask about joining one of our support group meetings as an opportunity to link in with, and hear from, other family members.

    My question is not on this page:

    Please Contact Us. If we are not the right service for information or support we may be able to provide an appropriate referral.