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Coroner’s Service

Two people talkingThe Coroner's Service investigates unnatural, sudden or unexplained deaths and any deaths in police custody.

The Coroner can then make recommendations to help prevent similar deaths in the future.

People also have a duty to report any object believed to be treasure to the Coroner.

The Coroner is an independent judicial officer, working in partnership with West Sussex County Council.

  • This information is intended for the next of kin explaining what to do if somebody dies suddenly, Why the police are involved, identification, personal belongings and clothing and what happens next. There is also information on post mortem examinations and funeral arrangements.
  • Every investigation is different and the Coroner decides what is necessary. This may involve: a review of the person's medical history and the circumstances of the death; a post mortem (autopsy) and pathology tests;specialist reports from experts and external investigators such as police, doctors, engineers, the fire brigade, air safety officer etc; statements from witnesses, such as family and friends; and an Inquest.
  • These frequently asked questions include general queries, questions on post mortems, inquests, as well as other responsibilities of the Coroner, such as treasure.
  • The Coroner does not endorse nor take responsibility for the content or advice offered on the websites listed below.
  • This gives information on the Magistrates' Court and West Sussex County Council locations where inquests are held.


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