How Much Does a Coroner Make? (Average Coroner Salary)

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How much does a coroner make? What’s the national average coroner salary in the United States? When it comes to preparing for a career in criminal justice, it’s important to think about your alternatives and the steps you’ll need to take to go where you want to go. You can improve your chances of reaching your professional objectives by taking the time to prepare for your career and conduct the required study.

Average salary of a coroner

By comparing a few comparable occupations, we can determine the typical income of a coroner. Forensic scientists, for example, earn an average of $66,181 per year, whereas criminal investigators earn $72,088 per year. We can assume that a coroner’s pay is comparable to or higher than that of these similar professions based on these figures.

Overtime pay is not factored into these estimates.

Geography and income

In Champaign County, Illinois, a deputy coroner earns between $47,080 and $63,225, whereas coroners in Sacramento County, California, earn between $37,062 and $47,293.

how much does a coroner make

Coroner earnings by seniority

Salary range based on seniority.

Top-level coroner earnings begin at:

$52.86 per hour, $109,950 per year.

Senior-level coroner earnings begin at:

$43.88 per hour, $91,260 per year.

Mid-level coroner earnings begin at:

$33.20 per hour, $69,050 per year.

Junior-level coroner earnings begin at:

$24.54 per hour, $51,050 per year.

Starting level coroner earnings begin at:

$18.71 per hour, $38,920 per year.

What does a coroner do?

Coroners are often elected officials at the county level. They examine the corpses of the deceased and, based on their knowledge, establish the deceased’s identification as well as the cause and time of death. They are supposed to write death certificates after conducting a comprehensive examination.

They must be available at all hours of the day and night since they are expected to be present at crime scenes and suspicious deaths. Coroners also work with police officers to produce thorough reports on their findings, as well as any physical evidence discovered on the deceased.

How do you become a coroner?

To become a coroner, you must have the following educational and professional experiences:

Review state requirements

State-by-state differences in educational and professional requirements are significant. In states where the office of coroner is chosen, you can just need a high school diploma and extra employment requirements like death investigation training.

Some states require coroners to be or have previously held jobs as physicians or forensic scientists, necessitating the pursuit of a higher education degree. You can plan your next move by reading the criteria for coroners in your state.

Complete death investigator training

If becoming a coroner in your state just requires a high school education, the next step is to undergo death investigator training. The American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators (ABMDI) offers a training curriculum that can be completed entirely online.

how much does a coroner make

Even if your state requires you to have a higher education, death investigator training can be something to think about while you’re getting your degree or afterward.

Only a few jurisdictions require coroners to be licensed physicians, while others do not require any medical training at all. Coroners are often employed as deputy coroners, who must complete a probationary term and specialized on-the-job training before being promoted to higher-level coroner positions.

Get a college degree

If your state requires you to have worked as a physician or forensic scientist before becoming a coroner, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree in a relevant subject at the very least. A Bachelor’s Degree in Forensic Science, Criminology, Pathology, Physiology, Anatomy, or Pre-Medicine is suggested for potential coroners. Master’s degrees are an extra step that can help you stand out from the crowd and earn a higher pay.

Choose a career path

If your state requires you to work in a related field before becoming a coroner, you have many alternatives. They are as follows:


Because a physician must have an extensive understanding of anatomy and physiology, this profession and its obligations might be considered a requirement for a coroner.

Forensic scientist

Forensic scientists frequently work with coroners, gathering evidence from the deceased, compiling thorough reports, and cooperating with law enforcement. As a forensic scientist, you can already have many of the skills and industry expertise needed to become a coroner.

how much does a coroner make

Medical examiner

In certain states, the medical examiner is considered to be on par with a coroner in terms of salary and responsibilities, but in others, medical examiners are a rung below county coroners. If you reside in a state where this is the case, you might want to explore working as a medical examiner before applying for a position as a coroner.

Earn industry certifications

Industry credentials, in addition to higher education and relevant professional experience, can be a decisive factor in whether or not you are hired as a coroner. You can obtain numerous certifications from the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators (ABMDI) to improve your professional knowledge and employability.

The (ABMDI) offers a death investigator training course, as previously indicated. They also provide training in areas such as aquatic abuse, death and homicidal drowning investigations, and natural catastrophe investigations.

Apply for appointed coroner positions

The third stage is to begin applying for employment as a coroner in your state or county. You can request for a coroner through the relevant government body in situations where states appoint coroners. If your state elects solely coroners, you’ll need to express your interest in being nominated.

Job market outlook for coroners

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the job outlook for forensic science technicians, which are closely connected to coroners, is anticipated to grow by 14% over the next ten years. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there will be greater competition for forensic science technician jobs as demand grows.

Currently, over 16,000 forensic science technicians work in the United States. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) advises people interested in a career in forensic science to get a master’s degree to improve their employability.

Related careers

Careers related to the coroner job title.

  • Forensic Psychologist
  • Forensic Pathologist
  • Sports Referee Bailiff
  • Judicial Law Clerk
  • Hearing Officer

Common questions

Questions regarding the annual compensation of a coroner and their career path.

Why are coroners on duty during a crime scene?

By performing autopsies, toxicological and pathological tests, and inquests, coroners operate within particular legal jurisdictions to establish the cause and type of deaths. These experts evaluate whether a death was caused by an accident, was caused by violence, or was caused by natural causes. In short, they determine the cause of the death.

how much does a coroner make

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