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Ending the postcode lottery for inquests

Posted in: Wrongful & Accidental Death 

Supporting bereaved families during an inquest will be at the heart of the new coroner system in England and Wales, according to Justice Minister Helen Grant.

For far too long the coroner system has lacked a national framework, meaning from one area to the next there has been a wide range of standards.

Under new plans, coroners will:

  • be subject to stricter time limits for completing an inquest;
  • have to report any cases that last more than a year to the Chief Coroner;
  • be required to release bodies for funerals within 30 days;
  • provide greater access to materials, such as post-mortem reports, before the inquest takes place;
  • be able to make use of new technologies so that vulnerable witnesses can give evidence via video link;
  • be subject to new mandatory training requirements.

Justice Minister Helen Grant said:

‘We need to end the postcode lottery that has plagued the coroner system for too long.

‘We want a system that puts the needs of bereaved people first and foremost.

‘I want to see all coroners delivering the same, efficient service across the board. We must be assured that coroners are conducting inquests quickly, with adequate care and with the right support available for relatives.’


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