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Inquest in United Kingdom

Inquest in North Ireland

An inquiry into an unexplained death, conducted by a Coroner (sometimes sitting with a jury), to determine who died and in what circumstances, but without attributing criminal or civil liability to anyone who may have been responsible for the death.

Meaning of Inquest

The following is an old definition of Inquest [1]: An inquiry by a jury, duly impaneled by the proper officer, into any cause, civil or criminal; also, such jury itself. Compare Inquiry, 2, 3. Coroner’s inquest. An inquiry by a coroner, assisted by a jury, into the manner of death of one who has been killed, or died suddenly or in prison. See Coroner. Grand inquest. The grand jury, see, in this resource, the term Inquest of lands; sheriffs inquisition. In Pennsylvania, after a sheriff’s has levied upon a debtor’s realty, he summons a jury of at least six men who ascertain whether the rents and profits of the estate, beyond all reprises, will be sufficient, within seven years, to satisfy the judgment and costs of suit. The right to the proceeding is frequently waived. Inquest of ofllee. A method of redressing an injury which the crown (state) receives from a subject. An inquiry made by a sheriff, coroner, escheator, or commissioners specially appointed, concerning any matter that entitles the king to the possession of lands or tenements, goods or chattels; as, reversions accruing to the crown, escheats, forfeitures, whether one is a lunatic and what property he has, the fact of a wreck, of treasure-trove, etc. Also known as ” oflBce found,” see, in this resource, the term


Notes and References

  1. Concept of Inquest provided by the Anderson Dictionary of Law (1889) (Dictionary of Law consisting of Judicial Definitions and Explanations of Words, Phrases and Maxims and an Exposition of the Principles of Law: Comprising a Dictionary and Compendium of American and English Jurisprudence; William C. Anderson; T. H. Flood and Company, Law Publishers, Chicago, United States)

Concept of Inquest

Traditional meaning of inquest [1] in the English common law history: A judicial inquiry; especially by a coroner’s or sheriff’s jury. The finding of a jury. Inquest of office: the inquest of a king’s officer, coroner, or escheator, either by writ or commission, or virtute officii, into a matter in which the King is interested; the escheat of lands on attainder, etc. The verdict was called office found.


Notes and References

  1. Based on A concise law dictionary of words, phrases and maxims, “Inquest”, Boston: Little, Brown, and Company, 1911, United States. This term and/or definition may be absolete. It is also called the Stimson’s Law dictionary, based on a glossary of terms, included Inquest.

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Schema Summary

  • Article Name: Inquest
  • Author: Agnes Murphy
  • Description: Inquest in North Ireland An inquiry into an unexplained death, conducted by a Coroner (sometimes sitting with a jury), to [...]

This entry was last updated: February 4, 2020


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