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Inquest solicitors

Stephensons has a team of specialist inquest solicitors who provide expert advice and representation to families, professionals and businesses in the Coroners Courts nationwide.

Our specialist inquest solicitors understand that attending an inquest can be a very difficult and stressful experience for anyone involved, particularly where you have lost a loved one. Our inquest solicitors can provide you with the specialist advice and professional support required to assist you in navigating the challenging Coronial process and to ensure that you obtain the answers required.

For a confidential, no obligation discussion regarding an inquest, please contact our specialist inquest lawyers now on 0161 696 6250.

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Why choose the inquest solicitors at Stephensons?

Our firm has developed an excellent reputation in the health and social care sectors and we pride ourselves on achieving the best possible results for our clients. We are recommended by the Legal 500 and our regulatory team won the Social Care Premier Supplier Award – Legal Category in 2022.

Our specialist inquest lawyers have provided expert advice and representation to interested parties or witnesses in inquests nationwide for many years. We have extensive experience of representing interested parties at pre-inquest review hearings and final inquest hearings, including Article 2 inquests.

Whether you have lost a family member or you are a healthcare professional or business, such as a care home or nursing home, our inquest solicitors can help to protect your position and ensure that the facts are fully investigated and considered.

Frequently asked questions

What is an inquest?

An inquest is called where a person has died in circumstances which appear to be due to unknown, violent or unnatural causes. An inquest is a fact-finding inquiry with the purpose of determining who died; when; where; and how they came about their death.

What are the possible outcomes of an inquest?

The coroner can provide a ‘short form’ conclusion or a ‘narrative’ conclusion. A ‘short form’ conclusion is limited to a couple of words and can include: accident or misadventure; alcohol / drug related death; natural causes; suicide; or unlawful killing, for example. ‘Narrative’ conclusions will usually consist of a few sentences summarising how a person came to their death.

What is an interested person in an inquest?

The coroner may grant ‘interested party’ status in an inquest to any person who the coroner thinks has a sufficient interest in the death. It is defined in Section 47(2) of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009 and can include the deceased’s spouse, civil partner, partner, parent, child, brother, sister, grandparent, grandchild, child of a brother or sister, stepfather, stepmother, half-brother or half-sister; or someone with involvement in the circumstances leading to the death.

Interested parties are entitled to legal representation and have a right to be notified about certain aspects of inquest and receive disclosure which is relevant to the inquest. They are also entitled to ask questions of any witnesses at the inquest.

What is an Article 2 inquest?

An Article 2 inquest is held where it is considered that the state or a private body is implicated in a death and it requires a more thorough investigation into the circumstances of a person’s death.

How can I fund inquest representation?

Our specialist inquest solicitors can assist you with an inquest on a private paying basis or through an applicable legal expenses insurance policy. We are happy to assist you in determining whether you have any such cover.

Public funding from the Legal Aid Agency (LAA) is available in certain circumstances. Legal help is provided to people who meet certain financial criteria but this is limited to assistance from a solicitor to prepare for an inquest only. For example, this may cover preparing witness statements or submissions setting out a family’s concerns.

You may only be entitled to exceptional case funding from the LAA, which covers legal representation at an inquest, where there is an ‘Article 2 inquest’ (when the person who died was in the care of the state or a public body at the time) or when the inquest is likely to lead to significant benefits for the wider public. The LAA would have to be satisfied that one of the above criteria is met to grant legal aid for representation and this is not means tested.

Unfortunately, we cannot offer public funding within our inquests team.

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