Sebastian Naughton

Call 1999

Sebastian Naughton | Call 1999

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Sebastian has acted in several long running and high profile inquests.  His clinical negligence helps him remain undaunted by complex medical issues, and he is experienced at questioning and exploring expert opinion.  He has been praised for his tactful and reassuring conduct during inquests by his clients.

Inquests & Inquiries

“He is conscientious and prepared to go the extra mile.”
Chambers & Partners

Sebastian is currently instructed on behalf of an NHS Trust in the inquest into the death of Sobhia Khan (March 2023).

experience & expertise

Seb regularly acts for families, NHS Trusts, individual clinicians and various other statutory bodies in complex multi-factorial deaths, often involving Article 2.

Seb acted for an NHS Trust in the three London terror attack inquests between 2018 and 2021.  He has a particular interest and experience in cases involving deaths arising from or connected to eating disorders, having acted on behalf of the bereaved families in a number of high-profile inquests, including the inquest into the death of Averil Hart (September 2020) and HS (September 2022) among others.  Seb is frequently praised by his clients not only for his forensic questioning of witnesses, but for his compassionate and reassuring conduct, and his ability to put nervous witnesses at ease.  He sits as an Assistant (Part-time) Coroner in South London.

cases & work of note

A selection of recent cases of note (details anonymised) includes:

  • Acting for Derbyshire NHS Foundation Trust in the widely reported inquest into the death of Sobhia Khan (March to June 2023).
  • Acted for the family of a young mother who took her life using sodium nitrite whilst an inpatient, having advised staff of her plan to do so in advance.  The Article 2 inquest was heard at the Gloucester Coroner’s Court (September 2022).
  • R (on the application of Patton) v HM Assistant Coroner for Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire [2022] EWHC 1377, in which Seb was instructed on behalf of the coroner in this judicial review into the determination of the question of whether Article 2 should apply to the inquest.
  • Acted on behalf of the family of HS in an Article 2 inquest into the death of an anorexia nervosa patient.  Failures by the eating disorder services were found by the jury to have contributed to Hayley’s death.  The case highlighted the practical struggles that a number of services had in treating a sufferer of severe anorexia nervosa (2 weeks in February 2022).
  • Acted on behalf of the London Air Ambulance at the Fishmongers’ Hall terror attack inquest (2021), the London Bridge terror attack (2019) and the Westminster Bridge terror attack (2018), all before the Chief Coroner;
  • Inquest into the death of SO (February 2018), in which Sebastian acted for an NHS Trust at a complex inquest concerning a death from PE following complex lower limb surgery.
  • Acted for an NHS Trust in a tragic case concerning the death of a baby who was small for gestational age, at the Portsmouth Coroner’s Court.  The inquest lasted 1 weeks, and involved two independently instructed expert Consultant Obstetricians (October 2019).
  • Acted on behalf of an NHS Trust in the Article 2 inquest into the death of a highly complex patient with a mixed personality and eating disorder who had lived for many years on an inpatient ward, who had concealed large amounts of stock-piled medication (November 2019).
  • Acted for the widower of a mother who died at 29 shortly after giving birth to her daughter following an infection of unknown provenance at the inquest.
  • Inquest into the death of RWM (February 2018), a neonatal death at the Bolton Coroners Court.  Sebastian acted for a clinician who treated mother and baby antenatally.
  • Inquest into the death of AB (January 2018), a complex inquest with many IPs relating to the death of a patient from a highly unusual and un-diagnosed cervical spine fracture.
  • Inquest into the death of AN (November / December 2017), an Article 2 prison inquest into the death of a young man who died following necrotising faciitis and hypoglycaemia.
  • Inquest into the death of PD (January 2017).  Sebastian acted for the family at an Article 2 inquest into the death of a mental health patient who presented to A&E shortly after having attended a train platform with the intention of suicide.  After a short period of voluntary detention, he was agreed home leave during which he stepped into the path of a train.
  • Inquest into the death of RW (September / October 2016), in which Sebastian acted for an AMHP who formed part of a mental health team assessing a man in custody accused of the attempted murder of two schoolboys.
  • Inquest into the death of CG (July 2015), in which Sebastian acted for the bereaved parents at the inquest.  This was a high profile and complex case in which the Senior Coroner made a preventing future deaths report relating to the standard of training for student midwives at the Hospital concerned.
    Article 2 inquest into the death of EC (June / July 2015) in which Sebastian acted for a family member in a highly complex case concerning the death of an anorexic 17 years old girl.  The scope of the inquest encompassed the two years before Emma’s tragic death.
  • Inquest into the death of JK (2014) in which Sebastian acted on behalf of the family in a case concerning a man who was electrocuted after he ran into a sagging high voltage power cable on a public footpath. This was a high profile claim in which there was a subsequent HSE prosecution. Sebastian has acted in numerous inquests in the last 12 months for NHS Trusts, and individual healthcare practitioners.


‘Sebastian is a very knowledgeable and experienced barrister. Judges warm to him.’
The Legal 500

‘Gets to the nub of the matter swiftly. Clients instruct him repeatedly as he is very supportive, and has vast knowledge and experience of inquests, and instils confidence. Thoroughly prepared, even when given last-minute instructions. Excellent on his feet, adapts to rapidly changing circumstances in court, and adapts his advocacy to the situation.‘
The Legal 500

‘Compassionate, responsive and puts clinicians at ease.’
The Legal 500

‘He puts clients and coroners at ease while drilling down to the relevant details quickly.’
The Legal 500

“He’s precise, thorough, responsive, and provides extremely good-quality legal advice. He is conscientious and prepared to go the extra mile.”
Chambers & Partners

“He’s very meticulous and his attention to detail is very good. Very concise, he is able to pull out the relevant parts of the case and really get to grips with the key points.”
Chambers & Partners