Nebraska Revised Statute 23-1824

Chapter 23


Minor; autopsy required; when; guidelines; reimbursement.

(1) The county coroner or coroner's physician shall perform, at county expense, an autopsy on any person less than nineteen years of age who dies a sudden death, except that no autopsy needs to be performed if (a) the death was caused by a readily recognizable disease or the death occurred due to trauma resulting from an accident and (b) the death did not occur under suspicious circumstances. The Attorney General shall create, by July 1, 2007, guidelines for county coroners or coroner's physicians regarding autopsies on persons less than nineteen years of age.

(2) The county coroner or coroner's physician shall attempt to establish, by a reasonable degree of medical certainty, the cause or causes of the death, and shall thereafter certify the cause or causes of death to the county attorney. No cause of death shall be certified as sudden infant death syndrome unless an autopsy, a death scene investigation, and a review of the child's medical history reveal no other possible cause.

(3) A county may request reimbursement of up to fifty percent of the cost of an autopsy from the Attorney General. Reimbursement requests may include, but not be limited to, costs for expert witnesses and complete autopsies, including toxicology screens and tissue sample tests. The Attorney General shall place an emphasis on autopsies of children five years of age and younger.