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Inquiries and investigations lawyers

We are experienced in managing all aspects of high profile and sensitive inquiries and investigations. Proud to be the longest-established Inquiries and Investigations team in the UK. we are part of one of the world’s largest global Litigation and Disputes teams.

We have significant experience acting as independent solicitors to an inquiry (both statutory and non-statutory) and also act on behalf of core participants and witnesses to an inquiry. We have undertaken the role of Inquiry Secretariat and are well versed in the practicalities of setting up and running inquiries and independent investigations.

Our vast experience includes managing or assisting in public inquiries established by central or local government. but our work also includes internal investigations for public authorities and corporate entities. We are structured as a team to mobilize resource at a scale to meet the needs of any matter, and whatever the location.

Inquiries can be instigated into any matter of public importance. Our lawyers have worked on investigations covering all topics from financial overspend, allegations of extremism and abuse of power, to policing and child abuse.

Experienced inquiries and investigations lawyers

We are experienced in working flexibly and at pace as the needs and requirements of an inquiry changes. We are acutely aware of the public scrutiny an inquiry can face on a daily basis and the often competing pressures of timeliness and thoroughness.

 Our experience in inquiries and investigations law includes:

Independent inquiry - Telford child sexual exploitation lawyers

Following reports in the press about alleged widespread sexual exploitation of children in Telford, Telford & Wrekin Council an independent inquiry in April 2018. Although the inquiry is being funded by the council, it is completely independent of it. We were appointed as the commissioning body in January 2019, part of our role being to appoint an independent Chair, Tom Crowther QC, who commenced his role in June 2019. The inquiry is ongoing and is taking evidence from a broad range of witnesses, including victim/survivors and professional witnesses from relevant organizations.

Grenfell Tower Inquiry lawyers

An inquiry was established into the Grenfell Tower fire, which killed 72 people in June 2017, to establish the facts of what happened that night, in order to prevent similar incidents happening in the future. The report for Phase 1 was published in October 2019, with Phase 2 currently ongoing and expected to continue into 2022. We act for two core participants in this inquiry providing strategic advice and supporting their role in the inquiry.

Independent inquiry – Child sexual abuse lawyers

This inquiry, led by Professor Alexis Jay OBE, was set up in July 2014 because of serious concerns that some organizations had failed, and were continuing to fail, to protect children from sexual abuse. The inquiry was originally intended to be a panel inquiry, but was reconstituted in February 2015 as a statutory inquiry, with Professor Jay taking over the chairmanship in August of that year. We have represented two core participants and an individual in the following investigations: the Anglican Church, Residential Schools, Accountability and Reparations and Westminster.

Infected Blood Inquiry lawyers

This inquiry was established as a result at least 3,891 people receiving contaminating clotting factor products supplied by the National Health Service (NHS) in the 1970s and 1980s. Most of the individuals suffered from haemophilia and were infected with Hepatitis C, of whom 1,243 were also infected with HIV, the virus that lead to Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). A long-awaited public inquiry was announced in 2018 and is expected to publish its final report in 2022.   

Independent Jersey Care Inquiry lawyers

We provided a 30-strong team to undertake all aspects of the legal and administrative work for the Independent Jersey Care Inquiry for its duration from 2014 to 2017. This was a child abuse inquiry in Jersey dating back to World War II, the terms of reference for which were extensive. Our team interviewed all involved parties, over 450 witnesses, and carried out extensive reviews of the relevant procedures and legislation in the UK, as well as Jersey.

Our team designed the accommodation needs for the premises from which the inquiry operated. We assisted in both the design and  layout of the hearing room (including the installation of equipment) and of all associated premises for dealing with witnesses and victims of abuse, together with facilities for the media to report on the ongoing work of the inquiry.

As well as drafting the witness statements, we considered more than 136,000 documents and were responsible for undertaking the work of redacting material as necessary to comply with the protocols under which the business of inquiry was transacted. We also drafted the protocols to regulate its procedures.

A recognized Inquiries and Investigations team

Head of Inquiries and Investigations, Sarah Jones, has twice been named in The Lawyer’s Hot 100 list of leading individuals in the legal industry. The independent legal directories are equally impressed with our team.

“The Eversheds Sutherland Public Inquiry team, led by the outstanding Sarah Jones, is the leading firm in their field. Their range of depth and experience is unrivalled and their current involvement in all of the main inquiries of the day, including IICSA and Grenfell Tower, amply bears this out. In my 15 years of practice in this field, I have not come across a firm which comes near to them.”  Legal 500 2020

“Peter Jones is possibly the most experienced partner dealing with public inquiries in the country at the moment and he is helped by exceptionally able principal and senior associates: Isabelle Mitchell, Angharad [Hurle] and Anna Lois Senter. They are some of the best solicitors at this level that I have ever worked with.”  Chambers and Partners

Contact our experienced inquiries and investigations lawyers today

If you would like any further information or need advice on inquiries and investigations law, please contact our legal team.