Organ Donation in New York

Organ Donation in New York

Each year in New York alone, thousands of patients receive kidneys, livers, and heart transplants from hundreds of donors. At this time, there are 9,500 recipients on the waiting list in the Empire State.

Signing up for organ donation can make a big difference in the lives of many patients in need.

About Organ Donation

If you register as an organ donor, you could save up to 8 lives when you die. Your tissue can improve the lives more than 75 people by restoring eyesight, helping burn patients, and preventing disability.

Here are other important facts about being an organ donor in New York:

  • The medical treatment you receive as a donor is not affected by your donor status.
  • Donating tissue or organs will not interfere with having an open casket at your funeral.
  • Being a donor won't cost you or your family anything.

To find out about some of the most misconceptions regarding organ donation, visit our page about The 10 Most Common Myths About Organ Donation.

How to Register as an Organ Donor

In New York, you can register as an organ donor in person, by mail, or online.

You must be at least 16 years old.

When you register as an organ donor in New York, you provide legal consent for the retrieval of your organs, tissues, and eyes upon your death.

In Person

You may indicate your desire to become a donor at the New York Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) when you obtain or renew your driver's licensee or state ID card. For more information, visit our Driver License & ID section.

The New York Board of Elections allows you to sign up as an organ donor when you complete your voter registration. For more information, visit our Voter Registration page.

NOTE: If you registered to be a donor before July 23, 2008, you're in the old registry. This means your next-of-kin must give his or her consent before your donation request can be carried out. To change your donation preferences, you must enroll in the updated New York State Organ and Tissue Donor Registry by one of the methods outlined below.


NOTE: You must have a valid New York driver's license or ID card to register online.

You may register online for organ donation at the following websites:

For more information, visit the website of the New York Organ Donor Network.

By Mail

You can also complete your registration as an organ donor by mail.

Simply complete NYS Donate Life Organ and Tissue Donor Registry Specification Form and mail it to the address listed on the application.

On your application, you are able to select your preferences on what your organs and tissues will be used for, including:

  • Transplantation and research.
  • Transplantation only.
  • Research only.

How You Can Help With Organ Donation

Besides registering yourself as an organ donor, you can:

DMV.ORG BBB Business Review