§ Mr. Peter Robinson
asked the Attorney-General what is the average length of time which elapses between a death and an inquest in Northern Ireland.
§ The Solicitor-General
Precise statistics as to the length of time which elapses between a death and an inquest in Northern Ireland are not readily available, but I understand that the average time is of the order of six to eight months.
Her Majesty's coroners and the Northern Ireland court service are aware of the need to do everything possible to ensure that inquests are held as soon as practicable after coroners are notified of deaths. However, several factors can lead to delays, and my right hon. and learned Friend the Lord Chancellor will be writing fully to the hon. Member in response to a letter which he addressed to my noble Friend Lord Gowrie on the subject.