Who will be in court?
Inquests are held in open court. That means that any friends and family of the deceased are welcome to attend.
Medical and non medical Witnesses:
The Coroner may also require other witnesses to attend. This will be different for each case, but may include doctors, nurses, police officers, eyewitnesses and any other relevant people. If you would like to know which witnesses will be there, you can call the office to check once the date has been set.
Bringing Someone to support you:
If you wish to bring someone to support you, you are welcome to do so. They do not need to have known the deceased. This may be a friend, union representative, support worker or minister of religion.
Children at the inquest:
For obvious reasons, an inquest hearing is not a suitable place for children and young people. The Coroner may allow small babies into the courtroom at his discretion. Please make alternative care arrangements for all other under 16's. Children cannot be left unattended in our waiting room. If a young person under 16 wants to come to a close relative's inquest, the Coroner may allow it. A responsible adult must stay with them.
Press and Media at the inquest:
Because inquests are held in open court, we cannot exclude the press and media. In practice, reporters do not often attend. However, if your relative's case does attract media attention, it may be helpful to decide beforehand if you wish to speak to any reporters. If you decide that you do not, Court staff will help you to leave without being disturbed. We unfortunately cannot prevent accounts of the inquest being published or broadcast.
Conflict at the inquest:
If there may be conflict between you and someone else who is attending, please tell us as soon as you are aware. We have procedures in place to keep parties separate and safe.