Sudden and unexpected deaths can leave a family bereaved, distraught and looking for answers. One way to help a family understand what happened to their loved one is with an autopsy.
Vermont law states that deaths due to injury or unexpected natural deaths, can be authorized by the Chief Medical Examiner or the State’s Attorney for investigation by conducting a medicolegal autopsy. Medicolegal autopsies are authorized under state law, and all costs associated with the autopsy are paid by the State. If there are specific religious concerns about the autopsy, the family may contact the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner or the State’s Attorney of their jurisdiction.
The autopsy procedure can take a few hours to perform and varies depending on the requirements of the case. The autopsy should not affect a funeral or viewing of the decedent. Vermont funeral directors have been working together with the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner for years and can assist families in preparations and transport of their loved one.