Reporting a Death
Any person may report a death by calling the Livingston County Emergency Dispatch Center at 911. A Medical Examiner Investigator will be notified to investigate reported deaths.
The Office of the Medical Examiner is located on the campus of Sparrow Hospital in Lansing, MI.
The Office of the Medical Examiner is mandated under state statute to investigate certain types of death. These deaths include sudden and unexpected deaths, accidental deaths, and violent deaths. The Medical Examiner has the authority under Public Act 181, P.A. 1953, as amended and the Michigan Public Health Code, Act 368, P.A. 1978, to order an autopsy to determine or confirm the cause and manner of death.
Medical Examiner Investigators have been appointed to be responsible for gathering of information, taking charge of a deceased person, and arrange for transport to a morgue facility for further postmortem examination as necessary.
The Office of the Medical Examiner is responsible for the identification of a deceased person and notification to the next of kin of the death, unless such notification has been made by an officer from the State Police, County Sheriff or municipal police department. The Office of the Medical Examiner is responsible for the issuance of death certificates for all deaths within the jurisdiction of the Medical Examiner. Cremation permits must also be authorized and issued by the Office of the Medical Examiner.
Call the Medical Examiner’s Office at (517) 548-4170. Information regarding your request will be recorded by office personnel. Postmortem examination reports, investigative reports, and toxicology reports can be requested.
To obtain a cremation permit, we can assist you by working with the funeral home of your choice. Applications for cremation permits may be submitted by fax (855) 300-7312.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will an autopsy be performed?
An autopsy will be performed when there is a need to establish or confirm a cause and manner of death for the purpose of issuing a death certificate, in cases involving criminal or suspected criminal wrongdoing, and in any case in which an autopsy is considered to be prudent at the Medical Examiner’s discretion.
Will I be charged for Medical Examiner services and reports?
There is no fee for the autopsy and the resultant medical opinion regarding cause and manner of death. 1 copy of the investigator’s report, autopsy report, and toxicology report (when applicable) will be made available to the nearest next-of-kin at no cost, once the case is closed.
What should I do after being made aware of the death and the involvement of the Medical Examiner?
Select a funeral home and advise the funeral director of the involvement of the Medical Examiner’s Office. Funeral directors are familiar with the operation of our office and will assist you in making all arrangements for final disposition, including obtaining the death certificate. The funeral director will also pick up the decedent’s personal property that is not being held as evidence. Often the deceased will be released the next day from our facility.
When will I be able to obtain a death certificate?
Arrangements to obtain certified copies of the death certificate are handled for the family by the funeral home. Your funeral director will be able to answer this question for you.
Note: On occasion, an exact cause or manner of death is not immediately determined following an autopsy or investigation. Special laboratory tests or further investigation may be necessary. In those situations, a pending death certificate will be filed, and later replaced with an amended death certificate once the cause and/or manner of death has been established.
Chief Medical Examiner
Dr. Michael A. Markey
Deputy Medical Examiners
Dr. Christopher A. Hauch
Dr. David S. Moons
Temporary Chief Medical Examiner Investigator
David Feldpausch, County Coordinator of Medical Services
Medical Examiner Investigators
- Richard Cruz
- Ed Moore
- Eric LaPres
- Scott Demoff
- Troy Murrish
- John Kelley
- Daniel Taylor
- Emily Gehringer
- Samantha Lee
- Diana French
- David Girard
Medical Examiner Coordinator
David Feldpausch is the County Coordinator of Medical Examiner Services. His duties include the supervision of Medical Examiner Investigators and maintenance of Medical Examiner records. Mr. Feldpausch’s office is located in the EMS building at 1911 Tooley Rd, Howell, Michigan.