Once a person has been pronounced dead at home, hospitals, and nursing homes or out door scenes, Funeral Directors are required by law to file a death certificate within 72 hours with the Registrar's Office in the municipality in which the death has occurred in.
In some Medical Examiner cases, the cause and manner of death on the original death certificate are listed "Pending Further Studies" or "Pending Investigation." An autopsy diagnosis may be "pended" to allow for a variety of additional tests including but not limited to toxicology testing, microscopic examination and microbiological testing. A case may also be signed as "pending" in order to collect and evaluated other investigation materials, medical history and information surrounding the individual's death.
When the Medical Examiner's investigation is concluded, an amended death certificate is issued to the registrar's office. To obtain an original copy of the amended death certificate, please contact the registrar's office in the municipality in which the death occurred in.
An objection to an autopsy based on religious beliefs will be considered except in cases of homicide or when public health is in question. If the case is not taken as a Medical Examiner case there is always the option of a private autopsy to be done at the family's expense.
Obtain Copies of Final Autopsy Report
To obtain a copy of a final autopsy report the spouse, next of kin or legal representative of the deceased must send a notarized release form with appropriate identification.