How many volts does it take to kill a person? You can be hooked to 20,000 volts and it will not kill you. Does that surprise you? It is actually the current that kills you and it only kills if it passes through the heart. As little as 20 milliamperes can kill you. Remember if working around live electricity to keep one hand in your back pocket that way the current can't pass through your heart if you are shocked in the hand.