If a coroner’s office or medical examiner’s office elects to not perform an autopsy in a particular death, a family can opt to perform a private autopsy. A private autopsy may help answer questions, such as, exactly why the person died, and aid in the examination of certain disease processes such as tumors, infections, and dementia. As with a hospital autopsy, in order for a private autopsy to be performed, the next of kin must sign a consent form. There is also usually a fee for a private autopsy. In contrast, autopsies performed by a coroner’s or medical examiner’s office are usually paid for by taxpayers’ dollars.