forensic_intro_final_08

forensic_intro_final_08 - 1 Forensic Neuropsychology...

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1 Forensic Neuropsychology Forensic Neuropsychology Introduction to the Legal System Introduction to the Legal System May 15, 2008 May 15, 2008 2 Law and Mental Health ± Domains of interaction – Competency » Criminal »C i v i l – Criminal responsibility – Mental injury – Juvenile, family matters ± Mental health professionals as experts ± Law-mental health organizations – American Psychology-Law Society (APA Div. 41) – American Academy of Forensic Psychology 3 Lawyer Lawyer -Psychologist Interactions Psychologist Interactions ± Training Issues – few psychologists with specific legal training – few lawyers knowledgeable about psychology ± Attitudinal Differences – emphasis on civil liberties vs. trying to help ± Free-Will vs. Determinism ± Simple vs. Multiple Causation 4 5 When Worlds Collide When Worlds Collide ± Psychologists and attorneys often operate according to different philosophies ± Psychologists and attorneys frequently use evidence differently ± Psychologists and attorneys often have different ideas about causation ± Psychologists and attorneys operate according to different rules 6 Paradigm Conflicts Paradigm Conflicts ± Free Will vs. Determinism – can’t differentiate behavior which is “forced” or “overborne” vs. freely chosen – example: “voluntary” behavior and the law of effect – example: “voluntary” intoxication 7 Probability Conflicts Probability Conflicts ± Psychological “proof” is probabilistic, rarely absolute ± Legal “proof” is probabilistic, then absolute – Preponderance of evidence (51%) – Clear and convincing evidence ( 75%) – Beyond a reasonable doubt (95%) – After burden is met, decision is binary and absolute (absolutely guilty, absolutely liable, etc.) 8 Paradigm Conflicts (cont Paradigm Conflicts (cont
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– cooperative (behavioral science) vs. adversarial (law) – law seeks to render justice, not necessarily seek the truth (persuasion may incorporate only favorable findings) – differences in reliance on past information or history (e.g., past criminal behavior) ± Relevance of Diagnosis – diagnosis important in clinical care, but largely irrelevant to mental health law (except that a diagnosis exists) 9 Definition of Expert Witness ± Individual who, by nature of education, experience, or training, is qualified to render opinions that will assist the trier of fact (i.e., judge, jury) in reaching an appropriate decision in the legal matter at hand. Lay witnesses are allowed to testify only as to their experiences (perceptions, observations, memories). Expert witnesses can testify as to opinions. 10
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This note was uploaded on 12/01/2011 for the course CLP 7934 taught by Professor Staff during the Summer '08 term at University of Florida.

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forensic_intro_final_08 - 1 Forensic Neuropsychology...

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