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inquests and investigations

Coroners’ inquests into unnatural deaths involving health and social care organisations are on the increase. They are particularly stressful for individuals called to give evidence, with the cases being held in public and often in front of family members of the deceased.

We know that every case is different and our approach is tailored to your requirements - inquests always require a combination of shrewd legal analysis and sensitive handling.

Our specialist inquest team advises on over 300 inquests per year, dealing with many complex and sensitive matters and has developed a nationally recognised expertise in the field of coronial law. Many of the witnesses we deal with are unfamiliar with the coroner’s court and have never given evidence before. We support them throughout the process, providing careful guidance on what to expect.

We have been working on behalf of public and private sector health organisations for many years, appearing before more than 50 different coroners across the country, lecturing nationally and hosting quarterly inquest and litigation forums.

what we do...

  • A total solution - we advise on related claims and policy issues, police investigations, Health & Safety Executive prosecutions and disciplinary action.

  • Review of statements to be sent to the coroner.

  • Advice on legal issues, disclosure of documents and likely determinations.

  • Advice on dealing with media and reputational issues.

  • Pre-inquest meetings with your people involved in the case.

  • Advocacy at the inquest and any pre-inquest hearings.

  • Assistance with responding to Prevention of Future Deaths (PFD) reports.

related resources

Legal updates

Fundamental dishonesty - Section 57 bites as the High Court offers welcomed guidance

Section 57 of the Criminal Justice and Courts Act 2015 gives the court the power to dismiss a claim for damages where it is satisfied that, on the balance of probabilities, the claimant has been ‘fundamentally dishonest’ in relation to the claim, unless the claimant would otherwise suffer ‘substantial injustice’.


Legal updates

Health Service Safety Investigations Bill: a new bill to improve patient safety

The Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch (HSIB) which became operational on 1 April 2017 was established to offer support and guidance to NHS organisations on incident investigations whilst also carrying out up to 30 investigations itself each year in order to provide meaningful safety recommendations to share learning across the NHS.


Legal updates

Applications for pre-action disclosure and the Access to Health Records Act 1990

The Access to Health Records Act 1990 (‘the AHRA’) provides a statutory right of access (subject to some exemptions) to a deceased patient’s medical records to a small number of people.


Upcoming webinars

Mental capacity act and deprivation of liberty case law update

Join our webinar for an update on recent case law in relation to medical treatment cases

View upcoming webinars

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