Helping you through an
Article 2 inquest

If a loved one has died in the care of the state, you may find yourself involved in an ‘Article 2 Inquest’ exploring the circumstances of their death. Our specialist team of inquest solicitors are here to help you find answers and hold those responsible to account.

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Specialist representation at an Article 2 inquest

An Article 2 inquest will always be held if your loved one has died whilst under the care or protection of the state, or whilst in state custody. This could be if they have died in immigration detention, in prison, or in police custody.

The reason Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights is invoked is because when the state detains someone, the state then assumes a duty to ensure that person’s right to life is protected; in other words, they have a duty to keep them safe.

This is also the case where a person has died whilst been detained (sectioned) under the Mental Health Act .

An Article 2 inquest might be held in cases where the state or a private body is implicated, even though a person was not under their direct care. For example, if a person has died following a police chase, if military authorities do not provide adequate equipment leading to a soldier’s death, or if a state body such as the military, prison staff, or hospital staff fail to acknowledge and address a person’s immediate and real risk of suicide leading to their death.

An Article 2 inquest might also be held where it is considered that systematic or policy based failures have caused a person’s death, for example, where a person has died due to unsafe hospital policies.

How is an Article 2 inquest different from other inquests?

An Article 2 Inquest means that the state have to carry out an ‘enhanced investigation’ into the death. Whereas a ‘traditional’, non-Article 2 inquest will look at when, where, and how a person died, an Article 2 Inquest also looks at the wider circumstances surrounding a person’s death.

This means that an Article 2 inquest can be more detailed and may well consider issues which would otherwise be deemed to fall outside of the scope of a non-Article 2 inquest. Article 2 inquests can also qualify for additional funding which would otherwise not be available.

We are experienced in representing families in Article 2 inquests and understand this technical area of law. If the coroner has not already confirmed the status of the inquest then we can make submissions on your behalf as to why an Article 2 inquest should be held to ensure the fullest investigation is undertaken.

Following the inquest, we can also help you bring a claim for damages where it is found that there were negligent failures in the care or treatment provided, which caused or contributed to the death.

Will I have to pay legal costs?

There are a number of ways to fund specialist representation for an inquest or bringing a civil claim. If an Article 2 inquest is being held, it is more likely that Legal Aid will be available to help fund representation and legal advice.

We recommend you get in touch with our specialist team so we can advise you on the options available for you and which may best suit your particular case.

How can Royds Withy King help you?

Our dedicated inquest team will fight on your behalf and guide you through the process, making it less daunting and ensuring that you get the best possible outcome.

Even if no inquest takes place, you may be able to bring a claim for compensation where negligence has caused or contributed to the death of your loved one. See our fatal claims page for more information.

If you would like to speak to our team, please contact us on

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