Are all deaths reported to the coroner?
Not all deaths that occur in Lancaster County are reportable to the Coroner.

Individuals who die from natural causes in a hospital, residents of skilled nursing homes, and those under hospice care are not always reportable. Individuals who die at home from natural causes and are currently under the care of a physician are not always reportable.

The following deaths are reportable to the Coroner in Lancaster County:
  • Any death in which trauma, falls or fractures, chemical injury, asphyxia, exposure, fire, drug overdose, or reaction to drugs or medical treatment was a primary, secondary, direct or indirect, contributory, aggravating, or precipitating cause of death

  • Any death wherein the body is unidentified or unclaimed

  • Any sudden infant death

  • Deaths known or suspected as due to contagious disease and constituting a public health hazard

  • Deaths occurring as a result of violence or trauma, whether apparently homicidal, suicidal, or accidental

  • Deaths occurring in a prison, penal institution, or in the custody of police

  • Deaths occurring under suspicious circumstances including those where alcohol, drugs, or other toxic substances may have a direct bearing on the death

  • Operative and peri-operative death in which the death is not readily explainable on the basis of prior disease

  • Stillbirth

  • Sudden deaths not caused by readily recognizable disease, or wherein a physician on the basis of prior medical attendance cannot properly certify the cause of death

Show All Answers

1. What are the duties of the coroner?
2. Where is the jurisdiction of the coroner?
3. Who notifies the coroner of a death?
4. Are all deaths reported to the coroner?
5. Are all coroner records available to the public?
6. How do I obtain an Autopsy, Toxicology and/or Inquisition or Coroner Report?
7. What is the cost of those reports?
8. Who performs the autopsy?
9. Why are autopsies performed?
10. If an autopsy is performed, will the decedent still be able to be viewed at the funeral home?
11. Will an autopsy delay the funeral?
12. Does the coroner need approval from the next of kin to order an autopsy?
13. Can the family request an autopsy?
14. Who can retrieve the personal effects recovered from a decedent?
15. When will i know the cause of death?
16. The cause of death listed is pending. What does this mean? When will the final cause of death be determined?
17. How do I obtain a death certificate?
18. Where will my loved one be taken?
19. What do I do now?
20. What funeral home should I choose?