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Coroners Service

The role of a Coroner

A coroner is an independent office holder, who is either a lawyer or a doctor, and in some cases is both. Each coroner has a deputy and usually one or more assistant deputies.
It is the Coroners duty to investigate sudden unexpected deaths where the cause is unknown or where the death occurs in legal custody. It is the role of the coroner to establish who the deceased was and how, when and where the deceased came by his or her death.
The Coroner’s Service for Leicestershire is divided into two districts:
  • HM Coroner for Leicester City & South Leicestershire District
  • HM Coroner for Rutland & North Leicestershire District
This website will focus on the HM Coroner for Rutland & North Leicestershire District. If you would like information for the Leicester City & South Leicestershire District then please see Leicester City Council’s Coroners website or contact 0116 225 2534.
The Coroner's Service for Rutland & North Leicestershire aims to ensure that relatives of the deceased are treated fairly and with respect. We aim to provide a caring and efficient service making the processes involved easy to understand and as accessible as possible.
It is the role of the coroners’ officers to liaise with bereaved families, the police, doctors, witnesses and funeral directors under the direction of the coroner.
The Coroners Team for the Rutland & North Leicestershire District consists off:
Name Job Title / Position
Trevor Kirkman Coroner
Carolyn Lesley Hull Deputy Coroner
Robert Chapman Assistant Deputy Coroner
Kathryn James Senior Coroners Officer
Gary McCann Coroners Officer

What will a coroner do when a death is reported?

When a death is reported the coroner may decide that a post-mortem examination and inquest are unnecessary as the cause of death is evident. In such cases the coroner will advise the registrar of births and deaths that no further investigation is needed.
If the coroner decides that a post-mortem examination is required then the pathologist is asked to examine the body and carry out a post-mortem examination.
A post-mortem examination is carried out to establish the cause of death. This is a medical examination of the body carried out for the coroner by a pathologist of the coroners’ choice.
Once the post-mortem examination is complete, the report provided is used in an inquest if the coroner thinks that an inquest is necessary. An inquest is an inquiry into who has died and how, when and where the death occurred. If the coroner feels that the post-mortem examination does not require an inquest then the coroner will release the body for the funeral and send a form to the registrar of births and deaths, stating the cause of death as disclosed by the post-mortem examination report, so that the death can then be registered.
For more information on the inquest procedure, please see the Coroners Inquest page.
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Page Last Updated: 21 July 2014