The Coroner Service is in desperate need of reform

Government needs to act

Sir, – Barrister Doireann O’Mahony is quite correct that families are being left feeling “stifled, silenced or gagged” by the Republic’s disjointed Coroner Service (Mary Carolan, “Inside Ireland’s coroners’ courts: ‘No matter where you are, or who you are, at the time of death, it should not be a postcode lottery’”, News, February 6th).

Giving evidence last May before the Joint Oireachtas Justice Committee as it conducted its own inquiry into the Coroner Service, I reported that as the law currently stands the deceased’s next of kin are excluded even from the process of registering their loved one’s death. Worse still, this has led to vital biographical information being omitted from the registration.

Yet, while the Coroner Service over a decade ago recommended to the then-minister for justice as to how this might be resolved, nothing has been done.

The Coroner Service is in desperate need of reform and Government needs to act. – Yours, etc,



(Former president of

Accredited Genealogists


Dublin 6.