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Coroners Act 1988

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

11Proceedings at inquest

(1)It shall not be obligatory for a coroner holding an inquest into a death to view the body; and the validity of such an inquest shall not be questioned in any court on the ground that the coroner did not view the body.

(2)The coroner shall, at the first sitting of the inquest, examine on oath concerning the death all persons who tender evidence as to the facts of the death and all persons having knowledge of those facts whom he considers it expedient to examine.

(3)In the case of an inquest held with a jury, the jury shall, after hearing the evidence—

(a)give their verdict and certify it by an inquisition; and

(b)inquire of and find the particulars for the time being required by the [1953 c. 20.] Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953 (in this Act referred to as “the 1953 Act”) to be registered concerning the death.

(4)In the case of an inquest held without a jury, the coroner shall, after hearing the evidence—

(a)give his verdict and certify it by an inquisition; and

(b)inquire of and find the particulars for the time being required by the 1953 Act to be registered concerning the death.

(5)An inquisition—

(a)shall be in writing under the hand of the coroner and, in the case of an inquest held with a jury, under the hands of the jurors who concur in the verdict;

(b)shall set out, so far as such particulars have been proved—

(i)who the deceased was; and

(ii)how, when and where the deceased came by his death; and

(c)shall be in such form as the Lord Chancellor may by rules made by statutory instrument from time to time prescribe.

(6)At a coroner’s inquest into the death of a person who came by his death by murder, manslaughter or infanticide, the purpose of the proceedings shall not include the finding of any person guilty of the murder, manslaughter or infanticide; and accordingly a coroner’s inquisition shall in no case charge a person with any of those offences.

(7)Where an inquest into a death is held, the coroner shall, within five days after the finding of the inquest is given, send to the registrar of deaths a certificate under his hand—

(a)giving information concerning the death;

(b)specifying the finding with respect to the particulars which under the 1953 Act are required to be registered concerning the death and with respect to the cause of death; and

(c)specifying the time and place at which the inquest was held.

(8)In the case of an inquest into the death of a person who is proved—

(a)to have been killed on a railway; or

(b)to have died in consequence of injuries received on a railway,

the coroner shall within seven days after holding the inquest, make a return of the death, including the cause of death, to the Secretary of State in such form as he may require; and in this subsection “railway” has the same meaning as in the [1842 c. 55.] Railway Regulation Act 1842.

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