Expert Evidence on Trial

Cathy Cobley, Tom Sanders

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


In 1996, the Woolf Report concluded that the cost of litigation was too high experts had become partisan advocates in court cases and their evidence lacked objectivity. Whilst the courts may require the assistance of expert witnesses on a wide range of topics which may arise in almost any kind of legal dispute, expert evidence frequently plays a central role in cases of child abuse. Significant evidential problems can arise during court proceedings in these cases and the evidence of medical experts can often be crucial in determining the outcome of a case. Traditionally there have been a number of reasons why medical professionals may be reluctant to put themselves forward as an expert witness. Sir Roy, a paediatrician who achieved wide recognition in 1977 for his work on Munchausen's Syndrome by Proxy and who was knighted in 1998 for services to Child Health, was an expert witness for the prosecution at the trial of all women.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEthics, Law and Society
EditorsJennifer Gunning, Søren Holm
Place of PublicationFarnham
Number of pages4
ISBN (Electronic)9781315094335
ISBN (Print)9780754648819
Publication statusPublished - 26 Oct 2006
Externally publishedYes

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