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What is a County Coroner?

by Kristin Higgins - May 6, 2022

Updated Blog Post

Are you looking at your sample ballot for the Nov. 8 Arkansas election? There are a lot of jobs on the ballot that people might not know what they do.

Today we highlight the job of a county coroner.

County Coroner in Arkansas

When someone dies in Arkansas, the county corner has a role in responding and documenting what happened. The county coroner is one of nine elected executive positions in Arkansas though it's an appointed position in some counties.

Term in Office: A constitutional amendment approved by voters in 2016 changed the term of a county coroner from two years to four years. The pay for the job varies depending on the population of the county, and is set by the Quorum Court using minimums and maximums in state law.

The Association of Arkansas Counties reported salaries ranging from about $6,000 to $125,527 in their 2021 county government salary survey. In Grant County, the coroner salary was listed at $75 per call. Counties that reported a low salary were for part-time positions.

Act 194 of 2017 created a tiered pay for coroners, allowing Quorum Courts the ability to pay a higher salary for corners with specific training. 

Eligibility Requirements:

  • United States citizen
  • At least 18 years old
  • Registered to vote in their county
  • No fraud or felony convictions

Job Duties:

Over their four-year term, a county coroner is responsible for:

  • Investigating deaths 24 hours a day, 365 days a week
  • Determining cause of death
  • Maintaining death records
  • Controlling county jails when a sheriff is imprisoned there

Look at Your November Ballot

Early voting starts Oct. 24 and Election Day is Nov. 8. Find out what is on your ballot at the Arkansas Secretary of State's VoterView website,

Use our 2022 Arkansas Ballot Issues Voter Guide to learn about the constitutional amendments on this year's ballot.

Additional Reading

Arkansas Coroners 2022 Procedures Manual - Association of Arkansas Counties