R (on the application of Maguire) v Her Majesty's Senior Coroner for Blackpool and Fylde

Human rights – Right to life. The touchstone for state responsibility, under art 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights, was whether the circumstances of the case were such as to call a state to account. In the present case, such failings as there might have been, concerning a 52-year-old lady (J) with Down's syndrome and learning disabilities who had died in hospital, were attributable to individual actions and did not require the state to be called to account. Accordingly, the Divisional Court, in dismissing a judicial review claim brought by J's mother, held that, on the evidence, it had been open to the defendant coroner to conclude that art 2 had not been engaged by the circumstances of J's death. The court further held that the coroner's approach to the evidence in the inquest could not be faulted and that he had correctly decided not to leave a determination of neglect to the jury.

Category: