The journal accepted a manuscript for publication with two authors. One of the authors passed away before signing the copyright. This manuscript is now ready for galley proof approval from the surviving author.
Proofs were sent to the surviving author and the author that passed away as normal because the production editor assigned to this manuscript did not know that one of the authors had died. After the deadline, over the course of a month, the production editor and production manager sent several reminder emails to both authors enquiring about the galley proofs. The handling editor was also copied in, on this email thread. The surviving author finally responded saying that the other author had passed away and that they would like to move forward with publication.
The surviving author did not acknowledge the email reminders regarding the galley proofs so the production manager sent more emails reminding them that, as the journal policy indicates, approval is needed before publication. It has been almost two months since the production manager or production editor has received a response from the surviving author.
Questions for the Forum
- How should the journal proceed?
- What issues are there with publishing an article when one of the authors of the accepted manuscript (who has not signed the copyright) has passed away?
- Can the article be published without sign off from both authors?