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The coroner

What the coroner does

The coroner has a legal duty to investiagate unexpected deaths. This might also include deaths from causes such as industrial disease.

The certifying doctor will usually advise the coroner but sometimes the registrar will when the cause of death is apparent.

After talking with relevant authorities, the coroner might decide to take no further action.

The coroner's officer will:

  • issue a Part A form to the registrar
  • advise the next of kin to go ahead with the registration

Post mortems

Sometimes the coroner might decide that a post mortem report is needed. This is usually completed within a few days.

The coroner's officer will:

  • tell the next of kin about the findings
  • tell them that they should go ahead with registration
  • give the registrar a Part B form

If the next of kin want to have a cremation, the coroner will pass a green form directly to the funeral director appointed by the family.

The next of kin should contact us on (0191) 643 6164 option 2 to make an appointment.


Sometimes the coroner may decide that an inquest is needed. This may take a long time to complete and the coroner will issue an interim certificate to the next of kin.

This allows financial and other affairs to be sorted out and should be brought to the register office if the BD8 form is required. No appointment is needed for this.

After the inquest the coroner's office will send the paperwork to the relevant register office so that the registrar can register the death. The relatives can then purchase certified copies of the entry. The coroner's officer will keep you informed.