Consultation on new quality standards announced

New national standards to raise the quality of family expert witnesses were announced by the government today.

According to the new standards, evidence can only be given by witnesses deemed by the court to be qualified professionals.

Expert witnesses have wasted court time and caused major delays in child care cases, the Ministry of Justice said, by making unnecessary further written statements and additional court appearances. From October 2010 to 2011, £52m of legal aid was spent on family expert reports.

"Poor quality expert evidence can lead to unacceptable delays for children and their families," justice minister Lord McNally said.

He said only the highest calibre of evidence wou...

Jean Yves

IICJ

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