MOJ announces plans to revise Human Rights Act

Government considers greater role for families in registration of deaths following inquests

Families could be given a greater role in the registering of their loved one’s death following an inquest under a planned Government consultation.

The proposals announced in the House of Commons follows the tireless campaigning of families of victims of the Manchester Arena terrorist attack who felt it was unfair that the law prevented them playing a role in the registration of their childrens’ deaths, as well as the families of victims of other tragedies such as the Hillsborough disaster and Grenfell fire, and local MPs.

Currently, the coroner provides information for registration of a death where an inquest has taken place. This is in contrast with non-inquest deaths where family members are able to provide information about their loved one themselves. Justice Minister Ed Argar said:

“The loss of a loved one is a devastating blow and for it to happen in a senseless attack or a national tragedy is all the harder for loved ones to bear.

It is only right we look carefully at where we can reform the law so that families can play a greater role in registering the death as one final act for their loved.”

The consultation will take into account proposals within the Data Protection & Digital Information Bill which will change how deaths are registered, moving from registration in paper registers to an electronic register. This will allow for alternative methods of registration to be considered in the future.

The consultation will be published in due course.

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