Grim and sad as it might be, I'm writing a story at the moment which involves an elderly woman dying quietly in her sleep in a house where she lived alone and lying undiscovered for maybe a few days. I can come up with reasons why she might have been found (milk bottles piling up in front of the door, etc) but I need to know the details of what would happen after she was discovered - principally about who would come in to clean up and sort her belongings (my old lady has no relatives or friends who would want her things): - I'm assuming the police, the first authority a concerned neighbour would turn to, would perhaps break down the door when there was no answer? Would they have a paramedic with them to determine cause of death? Or a coroner, even if they were only 80% sure she was dead? - If it was found she died in her sleep, would the body be removed immediately? - Right, this is the important bit. I have heard that when there is a decomposing body involved, a team of 'cleaners' are called in to sterilise the scene (just like the scene of a murder - I only watched half of Cleaner, with Samuel L. Jackson, and now I wish I'd stuck with it... ). Would this be a separate company contracted by the police? What would they do first? If the body was badly decomposed, would they deal with it, instead of the coroner, or are they only there strictly to clean up what's left after the body is moved? My old lady lives/lived in the UK, if that is of very much importance, but I can't see procedure varying that much to that deployed across the pond or anywhere else. Any help is grreatly appreciated!