Tag Archive: investigation

  1. Released Under Investigation vs. Bail – What You Need to Know

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    The Released Under Investigation law (RUI) came into force on 3rd April 2017 under the Policing and Crime Act 2017. Contrary to popular belief, Released Under Investigation is not the same as being released with bail. If you have been arrested and issued an RUI, it’s important to understand what this means so that you can avoid facing further prosecution for any breaches.

    Released Under Investigation means that, following arrest, the police need to carry out further investigative work, namely to make enquiries, before they can present your case to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).

    When the police have completed their investigation and have reached a decision, the outcome of the investigation will be delivered to you via post. It may also be necessary for you to partake in further interviews, notices of which you will also receive via post.


    Is Released Under Investigation the same as Bail?

    In short, no. Released Under Investigation was introduced to the policing system to allow police more time to carry out detailed investigations without the restrictions of the 28-day limit enforced by bail.


    Are there any conditions to my release?

    Unlike with bail, when you are released under investigation you will have no strict conditions to adhere to. However, you should still refrain from making contact with others who may be involved in your case, or from attending places where you are likely to see them. If you commit any act that could be read as intimidation or harassment, perverting, obstructing or interfering with the course of justice, you could be liable to a fine and/or imprisonment.

    If you do commit any such offences whilst released under investigation, you will be re-arrested and taken back into police custody.


    How long will I be under investigation?

    One of the issues with RUI, and it’s something that is being encouraged by people across the board to be reconsidered, is that there is no limit to the amount of time you can be released under investigation. However, if you choose to work with one of our Private Client solicitors at DRN, we will maintain regular communication with the police on your behalf and do all in our power to ensure the result of the investigation into your case is delivered as soon as possible. You will be continually updated on the work we are carrying out and informed about the status of the investigation should anything change. Any decisions made by the police regarding your investigation will be delivered to you with prior warning by us before you receive any postal notices from the police.


    How will I find out the outcome of the investigation?

    Following new laws recently introduced, the police now issue charges and other outcomes of their RUI cases via post. This means that you could be charged and summoned to attend court via post without having to return to a police station.

    For this reason, it is incredibly important that you inform the police should your address change whilst you are released under investigation, as a change of address will not make valid defence for failed attendance at court and you will be charged with committing a separate offence.

    Failure to attend at court could lead to a warrant being issued for your arrest, and you may be held in police custody until another court date becomes available.


    At DRN, our team of highly dedicated and experienced solicitors are committed to providing the highest possible standards of care and attention, and will ensure that you receive the very best legal support available.

    We have a legal aid contract and will assess you at the outset of a case to see whether you qualify for legal aid. For privately paying clients, we offer competitive rates and some fixed-fee services.

    Find out more about our services here or get in touch today to receive advice from one of our dedicated experts.

  2. What to Expect During an Inquest Investigation

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    Dealing with an inquest can be difficult, but dealing with legal formalities after the death of a loved one needn’t rest solely on your shoulders. Your solicitor can support you throughout the process, offering guidance regarding pre-reviews, reviews and expected outcomes.

    Every inquest investigation follows a very similar process, although naturally, each is unique and can require individual information dependant on a number of factors. To help you understand what to expect during an inquest investigation, here are the ways we can guide you through the process, and prepare you for the structure inquests usually follow.


    What is an inquest investigation or a “Coroner’s Inquest”?

    When a person dies, usually a doctor has the authority to sign off their death, making it official in the eyes of the law.

    In some cases however, a doctor is not legally permitted to sign off a death. These cases include situations where the death is unexplained, or has happened due to the actions of others. In these situations, the death is reported to a coroner and an inquest into the cause of death begins.

    Inquests are usually raised in the following types of circumstances:

    • the cause of death is unknown, sudden or unexplained
    • the death was violent or unnatural
    • the person who died was not visited by a medical practitioner during their final illness
    • a medical certificate is not available
    • the person who died was not seen by the doctor who signed the medical certificate within 14 days before death or after they died
    • the death occurred during an operation or before the person came out of anaesthetic
    • the medical certificate suggests the death may have been caused by an industrial disease or industrial poisoning


    Inquests are also raised with the coroner under the following circumstances:

    • Death following police contact
    • Death in police custody
    • Death in prison
    • Death on a psychiatric ward
    • Death in an immigration detention centre
    • Death in hospital

    If the above relate to the type of inquest you are dealing with, please contact the DRN team so we can advise you on the best course of action moving forward.


    Why does an Inquest take place?

    When conducting an inquest inquiry, the professionals involved are looking for answers to four main questions:

    • Who the deceased is
    • Where they died
    • When they died
    • How they died

    Although these questions seem simple to answer, in some cases experts must be consulted in order to make a definitive decision – particularly if the death is suspected to be another person’s fault.


    What happens during an inquest investigation?

    When an inquest investigation is opened, it is done so by the coroner.

    The coroner will then oversee a range of enquiries aimed at answering the four main questions asked about the deceased. These enquiries might include researching and obtaining information from witness statements, medical records, expert reports, police records and even CCTV evidence.


    How long will it take to complete the inquest investigation?

    An inquest must begin as soon as possible, but at the most, within six months from the date of death by law. More complicated investigations (particularly if they involved the police or health service, for example) take significantly longer.


    Will I be involved in the inquest investigation?

    All inquests have individuals involved names as “Properly Interested Persons” or PIPs who are usually family members of the deceased and individuals responsible for the care of the deceased during their final days. If you are a PIP you will be actively involved in the inquest investigation process, and will be allowed to be legally represented.

    As a PIP, you will be able to ask questions of the witnesses at inquest hearings and will also receive any and all relevant documentation relating to the investigation.


    Funding Inquests

    Legal Aid is available for families to be represented at an inquest in some circumstances.

    When you first approach us about your case, we will be able to discuss whether Legal Aid is likely to be available to you and anyone else dealing with the investigation, and support you with accessing the funding. We can also help you to find out about the alternative fee arrangements which might be available if Legal Aid is not an option.

    Will compensation following an inquest be available?

    You cannot get compensation as part of an inquest investigation or while it is in process. However, if during the course of the investigation relevant evidence is brought forward, there may be grounds to bring a claim against individuals or organisations involved for causing the death.


    How can DRN help me with the inquest process?

    Our experienced team of inquest solicitors will advise you on the correct and appropriate courses of action throughout the inquest and provide information on the investigations that will occur, and the conclusions that may be made.


    We can also support you with the appeal process, should you wish to appeal the conclusions of an inquest.

    For more information, please call us on 01282 433 241