Representation at a Coroner’s Inquest

Representation at a Coroner’s Inquest

Representation at Coroner’s Inquests

Representation at a coroner’s inquest can be vital if you are either considering a claim against a negligent NHS trust, a company or even a private individual, perhaps as the result of a fatal road accident. 

If you need help please get in touch to see how we can assist you.

Telephone 01925 937070 or email

When a person passes away a death certificate will usually be issued by their GP or hospital consultant if the cause of death is clear.  However, if there is a question over the cause of death, if the deceased was in prison, police custody or at an immigration centre or if the death was violent or unnatural then the coroner will hold an inquest.  

Coroners are independent judicial officers appointed by local authorities to investigate the causes of death within their local area. The point of an inquest is not to apportion blame, but to determine who the deceased was, how, when and where he or she came by their death. 

Once a formal verdict is given (now known as a conclusion) a full death certificate can then be issued to the family.

Some of the short form conclusions which the coroner may reach are accident or misadventure, suicide, road traffic collision, unlawful or lawful killing, industrial disease, natural causes or ‘open’ (ie where the evidence is insufficient to determine the means by which the death occurred).   

A narrative conclusion provides a short factual account and is concerned with the central issues in the case.   

If the evidence indicates that a person or organisation is at fault or somehow implicated in the death, eg negligence or corporate manslaughter then future legal proceedings may follow, either civil or criminal, but this is not within the remit of the coroner. 

A coroner can make a ‘Prevention of Future Death Report’ to the appropriate authorities if his or her investigations reveal that there may be a risk of other deaths in the future.

Family members often wish to attend an inquest so that they can ask questions of the witnesses to establish the precise facts. 

In such cases it can help to have experienced legal representation at what is an emotionally challenging time.

Representation is particularly important when a medical negligence or fatality at work or as the result of a road traffic accident claim is contemplated as the hospital trust, employer or insurance company will almost always have their own solicitors and barristers representing them.