The appointment of an independent psychiatrist expert witness is often invaluable to a given case. Ultimately, the role of a psychiatrist expert witness is to protect the mental health of vulnerable individuals with psychiatric medical care. Across public and private sectors, in schools and the workplace, in centres for care; more and more attention – and a greater budget – is being afforded to mental health and wellbeing with charities such as Mind and The Mental Health Foundation at the fore. It is no different when it comes to the justice system. As experienced psychiatry expert witness providers, we have seen first-hand the influx of requests for an independent psychiatrist expert witness report. For a multitude of cases, a psychiatrist expert witness report may form the evidential foundations upon which a solicitor may form their case. In this week’s blog, we take a closer look at the benefits of an independent psychiatrist expert witness report for court.
It should come as no surprise that a solicitor is by no means qualified to perform psychiatric assessments. Nor do solicitors share the same wealth of specialist knowledge and skill that a psychiatric expert witness has accrued over years of dedicated clinical practice and research. However, should a solicitor decide to do their own extensive research into psychiatric matters, it is sure to require much of their already stretched time. Not only that, when they provide their findings in court, undoubtedly it will not carry the same weight or accreditation as the medical evidence provided in the independent psychiatrist expert witness report.
When appointing a psychiatrist expert witness, it is imperative that a solicitor instructs someone with specific and recent expertise in the area in which the case sits. In doing so, the psychiatrist expert witness can complete precise and in-depth psychiatric assessments. These psychiatric assessments may be used to diagnose or to challenge diagnoses of mental illnesses and disorders such as PTSD, anxiety and depression, addiction, and psychosis. The methodology of each assessment and the medical conclusions are detailed in an independent psychiatrist expert witness report.
Used directly by the solicitor, the psychiatry report can be used as an integral piece of evidence which may, for example, explain an individual’s criminal behaviour, prove a person’s ability to parent or confirm allegations of abuse. By providing this new medically-sourced evidence in an independent psychiatry report, a solicitor can support fair trial of their client.
By appointing a psychiatrist expert witness, a solicitor protects their client on a number of counts. Firstly, they collect additional and crucial evidence by way of the independent psychiatry report. Though comprehensive and medically accurate, the psychiatrist expert witness report is written in a structure and language that is accessible to those without a psychiatrist’s knowledge bank. Using the independent psychiatrist expert witness report to build the case, a solicitor supports the mental health and wellbeing of their client. Secondly, by sharing this information with the court, the solicitor ensures that everyone is able to make a fully informed final decision, thereby preventing the miscarriage of justice.
It is clear that an independent psychiatrist expert witness report has many benefits for a case, client, and solicitor. Appointing a targeted psychiatrist expert witness can be a time-consuming process. With your dedicated case manager at Foresight Clinical Services, we will provide you with the CV of the most suited expert witness from our extensive UK psychiatrist expert witness network with 24 hours of your enquiry. Get in touch today to do just that.