Aug 9, 2019 by Foresight
6 Questions for Finding the Best Psychologist Expert Witness
Psychologists are tasked with understanding the mind and its behavioural consequences. Through years of dedicated study, research and clinical practice, a psychology professional can use their profound knowledge to assist solicitors by acting as a psychologist expert witness. Undoubtedly, the appointment of a psychologist expert witness can provide essential evidence for a case. From criminal defence to Family Law, cases of divorce, abuse, violent activity, trafficking, addiction and countless more are evaluated, and their subjects assessed by psychologist expert witnesses. There are many things to consider including psychology expert witness fees, their availability, their specific area of expertise, and their turnaround time for a psychology report. As providers of the most targeted network of UK psychologist expert witnesses, we share six things to consider when searching for your expert.
Do You Need a Psychology or Psychiatry Expert Witness?
There are certainly similarities and some overlap between psychologists and psychiatrists. However, when it comes to your case, it is crucial that you appoint an expert from the correct discipline. In short, a psychiatrist expert witness can diagnose a mental illness, outline its manifestations, and provide their medical opinion on the medical care an individual requires. A psychology expert witness will consider behavioural disorders, mental health problems, and motivations for particular behaviour with a holistic approach to their assessments.
You can learn more about the difference between psychology and psychiatry expert witnesses and how to decide which you need here.
Is the Psychologist Expert Witness Truly an Expert?
The title ‘psychologist’ is not protected by UK law therefore in essence anyone can call themselves a psychologist and practice as such. There are however some titles within the field of psychology which have legal protection and require registration with the Health and Care Professional Council (HCPC). These are:
• Practitioner psychologist
• Registered psychologist
• Clinical psychologist
• Counselling psychologist
• Forensic psychologist
• Health psychologist
• Occupational psychologist
• Sport and exercise psychologist
It is crucial that your appointed psychologist expert witness has one of the above titles. Not only will their expertise be guaranteed by their position, their reputation and involvement in the case will be respected by the court.
Is the Psychology Expert Witness Relevant to Your Case?
To find the best psychologist expert witness for your case, it is essential that their area of expertise is directly related. With their wealth of experience with similar cases, whether clinical or in acting as a psychologist expert witness, they may utilise their acquired skills and knowledge to perform in depth and focused assessments; the results of which you may use confidently in forming your case. Should you appoint a psychologist whose expertise is not strictly relevant to your case, you may risk their involvement and their evidence being challenged or dismissed by the court.
What is the Availability of the Psychologist Expert Witness?
A psychology report from an expert witness can give great direction and strength to a case. Not only that, often a psychologist expert witness will be required to give their opinion in court. There are a few things to consider here; is the expert witness willing to travel to you, are they able to work to your schedule, and are they available to attend court if necessary? Each psychologist expert witness within Foresight’s network is able to travel, meaning our clients are not limited by location when assigning an expert.
What are the Psychology Expert Witness Fees?
Case to case the budget for a psychology expert witness will vary. With that said, there are strict guidelines with regards to psychology expert witness fees when solicitors’ work is funded by legal aid. In order to ensure that funding is granted, it is essential that you appoint a psychology expert witness whose fees are in line with legal aid rates.
How Soon Can the Expert Witness Produce a Psychology Report?
A psychology report is often a fundamental piece of evidence to many cases. For any solicitor, the psychology report is best produced as soon as possible. After thorough psychological assessments, the psychologist expert witness may begin writing their report. Since psychology is such a vast and complex field, these reports make take a few weeks to produce. Should you require a report urgently, you must determine whether the psychologist expert witness is able to work within your given timescale.
Let Foresight Clinical Services Help
Within just 24 hours of a consultation with one of our dedicated case managers, you will receive one or two CVs of the most focused psychology expert witnesses for your case. The psychology expert witness fees will be within your budget, their expertise acutely relevant to your case, and their availability and psychology report turnaround suited to your schedule. Let us save you time and money; get in touch with our team today.
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