Evidence FAQS

The Inquiry encourages anyone who holds relevant information or documents to contact the Inquiry. Our contact details can be found here.

Rule 9 of the Inquiry Rules 2006 entitles an inquiry to send a written request for specific information or evidence to any individual who it considers may hold relevant information or documents. This is known as a Rule 9 request.

If you think you have evidence that is relevant to the Inquiry’s Terms of Reference, you are welcome to contact us now to let us know. There is no need to send the evidence to the Inquiry at this stage. We will contact you, if necessary, when we begin to request evidence through the Rule 9 process.

Evidence which was obtained during the Inquiry’s non-statutory phase has been retained and will be reviewed by the Inquiry.  

There is no need for witnesses to take any action to withdraw or resubmit their evidence at this stage. The Inquiry will be in touch with all witnesses in due course to discuss how their evidence may be used, together with any requests for additional evidence should this be required. 

The Inquiry team will be in contact with you when we turn to review the evidence already obtained.

Independent emotional support continues to be available for those engaging with the Inquiry. If you would like to access this, or if you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact the Inquiry team.

The Inquiry will publish evidence where it is necessary and proportionate for it to fulfil the Terms of Reference.

All personal and sensitive information that is provided to the Inquiry will be appropriately handled. For example, there are provisions within the Inquiries Act 2005 which permit the Chair to make a Restriction Order. This can restrict evidence from being made public if there are good reasons to do so.

An individual or organisation can apply to the Chair for a Restriction Order which can relate to any part of their evidence, including their identity.

Further information on how to make such an application can be found here.

All relevant and necessary evidence that the Inquiry considers as part of its investigations will be published on the Inquiry’s website, unless a Restriction Order is in place. Some evidence may also be shared directly with witnesses or Core Participants so they can provide a statement to, or fully participate with, the Inquiry.

The Chair urges any individual who is asked to provide evidence to the Inquiry to do so voluntarily.

Where this request is declined or not fully complied with and the Inquiry believes the individual holds important evidence for our investigations, the Chair may compel the provision of evidence. This will be done under the powers of the Inquiries Act 2005 and only where necessary and appropriate.

The Chair will not compel family members or current or former patients to provide evidence.

Should an individual be compelled, the Inquiry will ensure the necessary support is in place to enable them to provide evidence.

The general approach of a statutory inquiry is that any evidence that is provided will be public. However, witnesses can apply to the Chair of the Inquiry for a Restriction Order, which may relate to any part of their evidence being restricted from being made known, including their identity.

Further information on how to make such an application can be found here.

Please contact the Inquiry team should you have any specific concerns around providing evidence.

Documents provided to the Inquiry can contain sensitive, including personal, information and may need to be redacted in accordance with the Inquiry’s Protocol on Restriction Orders, which can be accessed here.

Redaction may also be used to exclude information that is not considered relevant to the Inquiry’s Terms of Reference.