Coroners Under Scrutiny
Are families getting justice in the coroner's court?
Ann Alexander investigates concerns about the conduct of inquests in England and Wales and asks why there is so much variation in behaviour of coroners and the rigour of their investigations.
Under the current system, it is up to the coroner what evidence he or she relies on, but this can leave families unhappy at the verdict and with little hope of appeal. The Coroners and Justice Act 2009 included long awaited reforms to the coronial system. At its centre was the role of Chief Coroner, but the coalition Government said the post was unaffordable and want it scrapped. So are Ministers missing a chance to ensure judicial oversight, enforce national standards and increase accountability?
Presenter: Ann Alexander
Producer: Paul Grant.