Access to Coronial Information

The Chief Coroner has issued a Coronial Practice Direction in relation to access to coronial information. The important principles are:

  • The Court ‘owns’ all coronial information and access is only by way of express coronial order or direction
  • Coronial information is not commonly released while an investigation is ongoing
  • Families are generally entitled to access all coronial information about a deceased person
    • Post-mortem examination reports are not automatically released but can be obtained on request
    • Copies of autopsy and scene photographs are not ordinarily released but arrangements can be made for viewing
  • Owners of property damaged or destroyed by a disaster or fire the subject of an inquiry are generally entitled to access all coronial information about a deceased person
  • Coronial information may be released to other parties if they can demonstrate a sufficient interest in the inquest or inquiry

FOI applications to the Police or other government agencies seeking access to coronial information will be automatically refused.  See the Coronial Practice Direction for further information.

Selected Findings

Most matters dealt with by the ACT Coroners Court do not result in published findings.  Most matters that go to hearing will result in published findings. Otherwise, a Coroner may direct that written findings made outside of Court are published, for example, when recommendations are made or the matter is otherwise of public interest.  Access to non-published findings may be granted in accordance with CPD 2 of 2019.

To locate all Coroner's Court findings go to the Decisions database.

Search tips: In addition to searching by name and Coroner, it is also possible to search using both file number and citation.  CD 125 of 2007 is an example of a file number. If you have a file number then place this in the File Number field.  A citation, such as [2014] ACTCD 2, is to be entered in the Citation search field.  If you wish to retrieve Findings made by a specific Coroner, typing in either 'Walker Coroner' or 'Coroner Walker' in the Magistrate search field will display all Findings made by that Coroner.

The ACT Coroners Court intends to reconsider and retrospectively publish certain in-chambers findings where recommendations were made, as part of its intention to publicise the work of the Court.  This will be done on an ad hoc basis.  Subscribe to the Court’s RSS and Twitter feeds to be informed of when such updates occur.