next of kin


next of kin
also, next to kin

Meaning | Synonyms

  • close relative
  • blood relation
  • spouse or parent
  • closest relation
  • nearest blood relation/relative
  • closest family member
  • kith and kin
  • nearest and dearest

An individual’s nearest living blood relative or relatives. A few nations have adjusted this to incorporate those related by marriage or adoption.

If you are married, your spouse is your next of kin. In case if you are single, divorced, not married, or widowed, any kids are your next of kin. After that – your parents; if parents are not alive, your siblings are your next of kin, in order by birth.

Example Sentences

  1. We cannot release the names of the soldiers killed at the battle of Normandy until we’ve informed their next of kin.
  2. After his death, the documents were processed to enable his next of kin obtain legal benefits due to him such as pensions and gratuity.
  3. I will inform his sister about his health, she is listed as his next to kin.
  4. It is no easy feat being next to kin to a wealthy man.
  5. A next of kin is a closest family member who can be contacted in case of any crisis.
  6. Next of Kin‘ is a popular family drama that presents the family bonds, origin of terrorism and life of immigrants. (Literal example)
  7. Next of kin has been informed and is supporting in the investigation, according to police.
  8. The government has declared the reward money to next of kin of soldier killed.
  9. Police is trying to contact the next of kin of the victim.
  10. I think we should call the next of kin of injured person.


The first use of this expression was recorded in the 1760s as a result of the inheritance law act. This had to do with setting precedence for inheritance of property in a situation that the deceased died interstate. The law set up a kinship list of all the types of relatives, in order of closeness (children, parents, siblings, grandchildren, uncles, aunties, nieces, nephews, cousins, etc.). The law asked that the rightful heir be selected by starting at the top of the list and going down the list step by step to the next to kin, until a living relative is found.

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