Public Inquiries Solicitor

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Public Inquiries Solicitors

For challenging times

A public inquiry is a formal investigation conducted by the government to explore issues of major public concern. They usually relate to complex or sensitive issues that have affected public safety. The main aim is to understand what happened, whether it could have been prevented, and whether anyone was responsible for the incident.

Public inquiries often take place after major incidents, including health scandals, cases involving child abuse, and illnesses or injuries caused by a major disaster. If you've been affected by an incident that is subject to an inquiry, you may wish to participate in the process.

Public inquiries sometimes determine whether participants are owed compensation, helping to improve the quality of life for those affected. By giving evidence and sharing experiences, participants and witnesses also help to make sure that improvements are made to prevent this from happening again in the future

At Switalskis, we have a strong track record of representing participants in major investigations and inquiries. Our team provides a high level of legal expertise and has represented a large number of witnesses and participants in public inquiries.

Our team can help guide and support you through this difficult time, whether that be giving a testimony, pushing for fair compensation or managing the changing legal challenges.

For a sensitive and confidential discussion with our dedicated team of public inquiry solicitors, call Switalskis today on 0800 1380 458 or contact us through our website.

How Switalskis can help you

At Switalskis, our investment in our clients and their experiences sets us apart from other legal firms. We take the time to understand your circumstances and your relationship to a public inquiry, ensuring we provide expert legal advice that's tailored to your needs. Whether that means advocating for clients to become in public inquiries or representing them to secure the maximum amount of compensation that they are entitled to. At Switalskis we will always push towards the best outcome for you.

That’s why we always start with a consultation to help us understand your experiences, the possible outcomes of your case, and the legal services you will need. We will explain any legal terminology and help you understand what to expect from the process that's to come.

As a core participant, you may be asked to provide evidence that could be used to support the inquiry. Giving evidence can be emotionally difficult, and you may be asked to relive certain traumatic experiences. The public inquiry team at Switalskis is trained to listen in these circumstances, and we will take the time to prepare you to appear in court if you need to. We'll represent you throughout these proceedings and help you to prepare, so you'll be ready to give evidence if you need to.

Inquiries often draw a lot of media attention given their relevance to the public. Our public inquiries team can also help you to handle media requests and retain your privacy. We will be with you at every stage, and take on the bulk of the legal responsibility to help you avoid any unnecessary stress.

Switalskis' expert lawyers have represented in several high-profile public inquiries, and we'll leverage our experience to give you exactly the support you need. With a focus on strong communication and emotional support, you can have confidence in pursuing the outcome you desire.

Read what our clients had to say about the help they received from Switalskis

What should I expect from a public inquiry?

Several types of inquiry may be launched. These can be established by a government minister when there are significant concerns over events or actions that have affected the public.

  • Independent inquiry: These are usually carried out by a third party with expertise in the subject area, who can be trusted to offer the facts about the case without any bias. 
  • Statutory inquiry: These have more powers, including to compel witnesses to give evidence, but they must be conducted according to a specific legal process and may take longer.

The government minister or public body that establishes a public inquiry will set the terms of reference, which define the scope and focus of the inquiry. An independent chair will usually be appointed to lead the inquiry, and a panel of experts in relevant fields may also be appointed to assist in the process.

At this stage, the process of gathering evidence will begin. Sometimes, this involves calls for members of the public to submit relevant evidence. It may also involve public hearings where witnesses are called to give evidence under oath. These hearings are usually open to the public and media, though parts may be held in private for legal or security reasons. Representation by a solicitor can help you to navigate these challenges and provide the evidence the inquiry needs. If you are compelled to give evidence we can also advise you on protecting privileged information, and avoiding irrelevant questions. This will help to ensure you are treated fairly at all stages of the investigation process. We can also advise you on the tenets of public interest immunity. This is a principle that allows you to refuse to give evidence that would be damaging to the public interest, and this may be relevant in certain cases.

Inquiries ultimately aim to prevent future occurrences of similar events, and will usually result in a report with recommendations to this effect. Often, in instances where significant harm was done to members of the public, these recommendations will include compensation for people who were affected. The responsible government body or institution is expected to respond to the report with a statement of how they plan to implement (or reasons for not implementing) the recommendations. It will be this latter party that will determine how compensation will be allocated, and this is one area in which your solicitor can make a difference. We can represent you to pursue the maximum amount of compensation that you're entitled to, based on the pain and suffering you experienced as a result of the incident.

Proven expertise in public inquiries

Our public inquiry team has represented in lots of major inquiries, involving everything from the conduct of public bodies to child sexual abuse. While every case is different, our thorough knowledge of the law and our investment in our clients never wavers. With our strong track record, you can trust us to deliver the best possible outcome for you.

We have provided legal advice in many high-profile inquiries including:

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Why Switalskis?

Our solicitors are experts at providing legal representation during public inquiries. As a core participant or witness in an inquiry, you may need significant support at several stages of the process. The team at Switalskis is committed to upholding these principles throughout:

Clarity in complexity

Public inquiries can often feel big, complicated, and overwhelming. Even when you have a direct and significant role in the process, it can be hard to know where you fit in or what you need to do. The team at Switalskis prioritises communication, and we'll break down any confusing terminology so you'll always know what's happening and what to expect from the outcome.

Empathy at every step

We know that participating in a public inquiry can be tough. It might come with a lot of media attention, and you may need to attend hearings and relive traumatic experiences when giving testimony. We understand how you might feel, and we'll always put your needs first. We won't make you do anything you don't want to, and we'll lend an empathetic ear any time you need to talk.

Expertise you can trust

Our public law team has represented in major inquiries, involving everything from the conduct of public bodies to child sexual abuse. While every case is different, our thorough knowledge of the law and our investment in our clients never wavers. With our strong track record, you can trust us to deliver the best possible outcome for you.

Championing your rights

We're committed to making sure your voice is heard and your rights are upheld. When matters of public concern have affected your life, you have a right to justice. You may also be owed compensation for your experiences. The Switalskis team will make sure that you are treated fairly and that justice is done.

Find out how Switalskis can help you

Public inquiries are large-scale processes that can often take several years to unfold. If you have been harmed by an event that is now subject to a public inquiry, or were involved in such an incident, seek advice from an experienced and knowledgeable solicitor. The team at Switalskis can keep you informed at all stages and let you know what to expect from the process. We'll be by your side throughout and give you the best chance at the outcome you want.

To learn more or start the process, call us today on 0800 1380 458 or contact us through our website .

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