Attending an inquest can be a challenging and overwhelming experience at a stressful time.
It is crucial to be prepared and consider various factors that will help you to navigate the process. Here we will consider the top 5 things to think about if you find yourself having to attend an inquest of a loved one.
Purpose of an inquest
Understanding the purpose and procedure of an inquest is essential before attending. An inquest is a fact-finding procedure conducted by a coroner to determine the “Who, Where, What and How”. The coroner will need to determine the cause of death in cases that are sudden, unnatural, or of unknown circumstances. It is not a trial and does not assign blame. Knowing this will help you approach the inquest with the right mindset.
Seek legal advice, if necessary
Whilst legal representation is not mandatory, seeking legal advice can be beneficial, especially if you have concerns about the process, if the circumstances surrounding death are complex, or if you feel there may have been medical negligence. A solicitor experienced in inquest proceedings can provide valuable guidance, help you to prepare a statement and assist you during the process.
Prepare yourself emotionally
Attending an inquest can be emotionally challenging, especially when loved ones are involved. It is crucial to prepare yourself emotionally for what will happen. Seek support from friends and family or professionals. Be patient and kind to yourself because it is a fact-finding exercise only.
Gather all relevant information related to the circumstances surrounding death. This may include medical records, correspondence, photographs, witness statements or any other evidence that could help provide clarity. Having these documents organised and readily accessible will enable you to contribute effectively before and during the inquest process.
During an inquest, it is vital to respect the legal process and follow the coroner’s instructions. The coroner is there to guide the process and will consider all evidence available to them. Listen carefully to the evidence presented and take notes if necessary. Remember, the purpose of the inquest is to uncover the truth and help those involved learn from the circumstances surrounding the death.
By considering these top 5 tips you can better prepare yourself for the process, which will help you navigate through this difficult time.
As a result of inquest findings, you may wish to consider if there is a potential clinical negligence claim.
If you would like to explore whether there is a potential compensation claim as a result of the death, please contact our expert medical negligence solicitors today and enquire about a ‘No Win No Fee’ agreement on 0344 7768328.
RHL Solicitors will have no delays or waiting times in advising you on your situation and will be quick to get you the support and care you