A nonperson is a citizen or a member of a group who lacks, loses, or is forcibly denied social or legal status, especially basic human rights, or who effectively ceases to have a record of their existence within a society (damnatio memoriae), from a point of view of traceability, documentation, or existence. The term also refers to people whose death is unverifiable.

Legal status

Asserting that someone is a nonperson is implicitly a normative statement; by doing so, it is implied simultaneously that the person referred to is entitled to the rights that any person should have. Who is a person and what every person is entitled to depends on context and social norms. For example, wards that are under the authority of a legal guardian due to infancy, incapacity, or disability are not usually considered nonpersons.