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The coroner's Office does not select funeral homes nor does it make arrangements. In the event someone is making the arrangements for the family, the Coroner must be provided with written authorization to release the deceased, signed by the legal next of kin. Should he/she reside at a distant location, they may send a FAX directly to our office using this Format (PDF).
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In a majority of the cases, visual identification is not required. Should it become necessary for you to come in or bring other records or x-rays, you will be contacted.
The Coroner's facility is not designed to accommodate viewing the remains. Arrangements can be made at the funeral home for viewing.
State law requires the Coroner to inquire into and determine the circumstances, manner, and cause of death if the death is suspicious, obscure, mysterious, or otherwise unexplained and in the opinion of the examining physician or the coroner the cause of death cannot be established definitely except by autopsy, and where a death has occurred while being pursued, apprehended, or taken into custody by or while in the custody of any law enforcement agency. An autopsy occurs when there are:
Illinois law permits corneal removal for transplantation purposes if there is no known objection. With the next of kin's consent, certain other types of tissues may also be donated and thereby help others. You may be
Call as soon as possible
The coroner will try to release the body of the decedent to the decedent's next of kin, personal representative, friends, or to the person designated in writing by the decedent or to the funeral director selected by such persons, as the case may be, for burial.
As soon as possible, select a funeral home and inform the funeral director that the death is being handled by the Coroner's office. Ask them to notify the coroner - as soon as possible.
You may obtain a copy by calling the Coroner's Office
At that time, you will be informed of the cost of this service and how this document or any Coroner records can be obtained.
The County is required to assess certain fees for transportation and storage. You will receive written correspondence to this effect when and if they apply.
The Death Certificate is filed with the Health Department by the Funeral Director. Should you require certified copies, they can be ordered through the funeral home or they may be purchased from:
Persons who have served in the Armed Forces, were honorably discharged, and meet other service requirements are entitled to a Veteran's burial. For information contact the Veteran's Affairs Office
For information on Military, Veterans, or Social Security benefits, contact your Funeral Service Practitioner.
If the deceased does not have sufficient funds for burial, the next of kin may apply for County disposition. In these circumstances, proof of indigence is required. The family should contact the Coroner's office at:
Any personal possessions in the custody of the Coroner may be claimed by the legal next of kin. To avoid any inconvenience to you, call before coming into the office.
Clothing is not usually considered property. Unless there is a need to hold clothing as evidence, it is released to the mortuary recovering the deceased. Clothing that presents a health hazard may be disposed of for the safety of all persons involved.
In order to enter a sealed residence you need to obtain permission from the agency listed on the seal. Call the Coroner's office: