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Improving practice in inquests

Senior Coroner Andrew Harris and Deputy Senior Coroner Henrietta Hill QC

Andrew and Heniretta provide practical advice on improving your practice in the Coroner's Court.

Running Time: 42 Minutes

CPD Certificate: 45 Minutes


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Senior Coroner Andrew Harris

Andrew has been a paediatrician, GP, medical director, and public health consultant, before his career in law. He gained an LLM in public law with a dissertation on the statutory duty of quality.

He was called to the Bar at The Middle Temple and transferred to practice as a consulting solicitor. He became a part time assistant deputy coroner in 2007 and was appointed as HM Coroner for London Inner South in 2010. He investigates deaths in five hospitals, three of which are specialist centres and several mental health institutions, which lead to his regularly instructing medical experts. The jurisdiction has 4 prisons and there is a range of travel, industrial and domestic accidents, drownings and police custody deaths, leading to about 15 jury inquests and use of a wide range of experts.

He has written on health policy, edited books on primary care needs assessment and Health Law and published on communicable disease law, NHS system failures and anonymisation. He has researched what is a natural death and published in peer reviewed scientific and legal journals. He is the author of four chapters in the leading text of Jervis on Coroners. He is Professor of Coronial Law at Queens Mary’s, William Harvey Research Institute, University of London.


Deputy Senior Coroner Henrietta Hill QC

Henrietta Hill QC was called to the Bar in 1997.  She specialises in inquests/public inquiries, discrimination law and claims against the police.  She has appeared in many of the most high-profile inquests in recent years, include those relating to Jean Charles de Menezes, Diana, Princess of Wales/Dodi Al Fayed and Alexander Litvinenko.  She also represented 22 of the bereaved families in the second Hillsborough inquests.  In that capacity she was responsible for the pathology, neuropathology and intensivism evidence.    

She is currently representing the family of Dawn Sturgess who died as a result of the Salisbury poisonings, and is Deputy Counsel to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse.  Henrietta was appointed Assistant Coroner for Inner South London in 2013 and is now Deputy Senior Coroner.  She conducts inquests alone and with a jury, often involving deaths in custody or complex hospital-related deaths.  She regularly instructs experts, in particular on issues relating to psychiatric treatment in detention and in the community.