Washington State

Office of the Attorney General

Attorney General

Bob Ferguson

AGO 1962 NO. 175 > Oct 25 1962

(1) Only the decedent and persons who have the right to control the disposition of the decedent's remains may authorize the transplanting of organs to a living person. (2) Authorization for transplanting of the organs of a deceased person to a living person must be in writing. (3) Authorization to perform an autopsy is required to be in writing in certain instances.  As a practical matter written authorization may be required in all cases. (4) Medical personnel appointed by the coroner to perform autopsies need not be deputized by him.