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Coroner statistics for 2020 announced

The Ministry of Justice has today released the Coroners Statistics for England and Wales for the period of 2020.

The main findings are as follows:

  • There has been a decrease of 3% in deaths being reported to Coroners in 2020, the lowest level since 1995.
  • 34% of all registered deaths were reported to Coroners in 2020.
  • 562 deaths in state detention were reported to Coroners in 2020, which is an 18% increase from 2019. The  increase is driven by a 52% rise in deaths in individuals detained under the Mental Health Act 1983 and 6% rise in deaths of those in custody in prison.
  • Despite the pandemic, there was only a 1% decrease in inquest conclusions.
  • The estimated average time to process an inquest remained stable at 27 weeks.
  • The most common inquest conclusion  reached by Coroners was Accident/Misadventure which accounted for nearly a quarter of conclusions.
  • The number of conclusions of drug and alcohol related deaths increased by 12% to the highest level since 2014.
  • The report contains some useful regional comparisons, for example, suicide conclusions ranged from 5% in Gateshead and South Tyneside to 30% in Inner North London.

You can access the report here and the regional statistics here.

For further information, please get in touch.

Please note that this briefing is designed to be informative, not advisory and represents our understanding of English law and practice as at the date indicated. We would always recommend that you should seek specific guidance on any particular legal issue.

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