Aug 12, 2019 by Foresight

The Role of Expert Witnesses in Family Law Cases

Expert witnesses not only work on criminal defence cases, they can also provide useful insights in family law cases. Family law is a very broad area encompassing issues such as divorce, child custody and other family-related matters. The expertise of expert witnesses across a range of specialisms including psychology, psychiatry, paediatric medicine and forensic accountancy can provide convincing pieces of evidence to judges and legal teams working on family law cases, helping them to make informed decisions.

Expert witnesses can help provide clarity on a range of issues presented to the family courts. Psychology and child psychology experts provide useful insights on an individual’s state of mind and how their behaviour might be impacting other family members; medical and paediatric experts can confirm or challenge accusations of abuse; and forensic accountants help ensure all assets are taken into account in divorce settlements.

The Complexity of Family Cases

In some family law cases, the evidence of expert witnesses is restricted to what is necessary to enable the court to make a decision. Only hearing relevant evidence minimises the amount of valuable court time taken to reach a decision, and aims to ensure that the case is resolved in a timely manner. This is designed to minimise disruption to the family and ensure a suitable outcome is reached as quickly as possible. As cases involving children are particularly sensitive, only suitably qualified, experienced and recognised professionals are able to give evidence as an expert witness in these court proceedings.

Forensic Accountants in Divorce Cases

Divorce cases frequently involve disputes over division of assets. Forensic accountants use their expertise in finance to ensure all assets are uncovered and fully quantified. During divorce proceedings, it is common that a forensic accountant will be brought in to uncover hidden assets such as cash and bonds. It is common that assets might be temporarily transferred to a friend or family member to avoid declaring them in a divorce settlement, leading to an outcome which is not fair on both parties. Forensic accountants are often used to investigate these matters, ensuring all assets are accounted for and the fairest settlement possible is reached.

Expert Reports Are Considered Amongst Other Information

The primary objective in the family court is to look out for the wellbeing of any children involved, however the interests of all parties need to be taken into consideration and treated with respect and dignity. Judges in family cases take a whole wealth of information into account before making their decision, and while an expert can provide useful insights and recommendations, the judge uses paediatric, psychological, or other expert reports within the wider context of the case.

Choose Foresight for Your Expert Witnesses

In family law cases, an expert witness can provide compelling insights into a case. We supply psychological, psychiatric, medical, and forensic accountancy expert witnesses to the family courts, and manage the whole process of instructing an expert, so you can ensure thorough reporting on time and to budget. Contact Foresight to find out more about how our extensive network of expert witnesses can help your family law case.



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