Inquests and Public Inquiries
Inquiries and investigations in public life come in a variety of forms and often involve complex issues of significant public interest. Over the last 10 years, Hickman & Rose has acted for many clients with direct and significant involvement in some of the most prominent public inquiries.
Our lawyers work hard to ensure the right questions are put to witnesses so that an inquiry’s conclusions fully reflect our clients’ interests.
Anyone appearing as a witness or core participant before an inquiry is likely to face close scrutiny. Whether they be an individual, a public servant or a corporate entity, it is essential to obtain early legal advice in order to prepare - particularly if there is a risk of criticism when the inquiry publishes its report. We have extensive experience and the strategic expertise that can make all the difference as to how these matters progress and achieving the best outcome for those we represent.
We have extensive experience assisting clients seeking to be designated a ‘core participant’ in a public inquiry. Core participants are individuals or institutions deemed to have played a direct and significant role in the matters under investigation. Being a core participant provides an opportunity to shape the way an inquiry is conducted, for example, being able to be make submissions directly to the chair or panel.
Hickman & Rose’s expertise across a broad range of statutory and ad hoc public inquiries means the firm is uniquely placed to advise from the outset and to guide clients through each stage of the process.
Recent public inquiries in which we have represented core participants and key witnesses include the Azelle Rodney Inquiry, the ‘Mr North’ MOJ commissioned independent Article 3 inquiry and the MOJ commissioned independent inquiry into the collapse of the trial of 14 South Wales Police officers (the Lynette White case). The firm is currently instructed by multiple core participants in both the Grenfell Tower Inquiry and the Undercover Policing Inquiry.