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The High Court in a seminal decision has changed our thinking on the standard of proof required for a conclusion of suicide, whether recorded in short-form or as a narrative statement.
Instead of the criminal standard of proof, we should use the civil standard of the balance of probabilities going forward – on the basis that such a conclusion should only be reached if there is sufficient evidence to justify it.
To learn more about the decision of the High Court in R (Maughan) v HM Senior Coroner Oxfordshire and others, head over to Serjeants’ Inn Chambers where you can read Bridget Dolan QC and Debra Powell QC’s erudite blog post: This was probably suicide: the criminal standard of proof is no longer required.
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