If a brother, sister, in-law, long-lost cousin, or some other relative has gone missing, there are ways to search for them without paying a large fee for a professional people search firm or a private detective. Here's how to search for missing family members.
**Check With Your Family First**
The missing family member hasn't been in touch with you, but they doesn't mean they are totally incommunicado with everyone you know.
The first stop of your search should be family and friends. Put together a list of phone numbers and email addresses, and reach out to folks you don't routinely talk to, but how might have heard from your missing relation.
Common sense is your best guide here. Say your brother has been out of touch. Perhaps some cousins he was close to when he was younger have been in touch. Or maybe he always wanted to live in California, in which case, your relatives in Los Angeles are a good place to start. Get the picture?
**Use the Internet Second**
The internet is a powerful tool for tracking down missing persons, whose names might show up in newspaper reports, criminal history databases, real estate transactions, voter rolls, and so on. Or, they might just have a big old webpage of their own, or a listing on MySpace, FaceBook, or some other social networking site.
**Try Commercial Services Next**
If free searching isn't doing the trick, or if you just don't have the patience for it, then try a people find database. These are especially useful when looking for someone with an unusual name (so you don't get overwhelmed by false leads). In my experience, Intelius.com is one of the better services out there, and their fees are pretty reasonable.
**If All Else Fails**
Your best efforts at finding a missing family member may not always pay off, especially if the person has made an effort to NOT be found.
In cases like these, you may need help from a professional people-search firm. Look in the Yellow Pages in your area for a private detective -- look under Detective Agencies, or Investigators -- to locate someone who can help (but be prepared to shell out some big bucks). You friends and family may also be able to recommend someone in this regard.
Or use the less expensive services of a professional cyber-sleuth who may have better luck finding who you're looking for. The Resources section includes a link to a good people-search firm.
How to Search for Family Members
With the many tools available online, searching for family members can be easy. You can perform extensive historical research to find out...
How to Find a Family Member for Free
Whether it's due to a falling out or simply because of distance, many American families have a tough time staying connected. Whether...
How to Find Living Family Members
Many people want to reconnect with family members for a variety of reasons. Some simply want to reminisce about past family gatherings,...
How to Find a Long-Lost Family Member
It can feel devastating if you are unable to find a long-lost family member. Families can get separated for a multitude of...
How to Find Adopted Family Members
When you are looking for a family member who was adopted, the search can be overwhelming and frustrating. Knowing where to start...
How to Search for Family Members for Free
In the frenetic pace of modern life, people lose touch with family members all too often. With the Internet, reconnecting with loved...
How to Find Family Members For Free Using Public Records
If you've tried searching for a long-lost family member online but haven't found him, try using public records. Accessing public records may...
How to Find Family Members From Italy
Tracing your family roots to a foreign country can be an exciting venture as well as a challenging task. Looking for genealogical...
How to Find Lost and Deceased Family Members
Finding a family member that you haven't seen in a while, or finding a deceased family member, was once a difficult thing....
How to Locate Family Members for Free
Years ago, finding missing family members required making time consuming calls, searching through newspaper records, and directly appealing to government records ...
How to Find Lost Family Members
Finding a lost family member has become increasingly easier over the last several years, though it still takes a great deal of...
How to Find Long-Lost Family Members for Free
Losing contact with family members can be very troubling. People lose touch with relatives in many ways, through divorces, moves or even...
How to Find Missing Family Members
Somehow you have lost contact with your family. Maybe they moved away and you can't locate them. While this can be a...
How to Find Lost Family for Free
Lost family members leave important clues that help you locate them wherever they have gone. Things said to close friends and family...
How to Contact Lost Family Members
In our transient society, it is not difficult for family members to lose touch with each other. Whether a job takes you...
How to Find Missing Relatives for Free
Even in close-knit families, an immediate family member or a relative can go missing. People sometimes lose touch, become estranged, go off...
How to Find a Dead Family Member
Finding dead family members is necessary if you're building a family tree. There are several ways to find a dead family member--in...
How to Find a Lost Family Member for Free
Plenty of online businesses charge a fee to track down a lost relative's address and contact information. But those companies use the...
How to Find a Family Member Online
How to Find Family Members For Free Using Public Records. If you've tried searching for a long-lost family member online but haven't...
How to Get Along With Relatives
How to Find a Long-Lost Family Member. It can feel devastating if you are unable to find a long-lost family member. Families...