Introduction

Psychiatric evidence may be required in a wide range of civil and criminal cases dealt with by the courts. Psychiatrists need to know how to provide good quality written and oral evidence, and to achieve this it is important to have a clear understanding of the specific legal questions that are at issue in the particular case, the nature of the legal proceedings, and to have carried out thorough preparation.

This section briefly discusses the role of the expert witness, the status of psychiatric evidence in court, some specific issues in civil and criminal cases, the preparation of written reports, and the task of giving oral evidence in court. The practice of forensic psychiatry and the use of psychiatric evidence by courts will vary in different legislatures. The account below refers primarily to England and Wales, but the general principles and approach are of wider application.

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Dealing With Erectile Dysfunction

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