EXPERT WITNESS TRAINING PROGRAM
The aim of this course is for health care practitioners to develop the skills required to provide evidence to the Court as an expert witness.
- Describe the roles and responsibilities of the various members of the legal profession involved in the court process.
- Write an expert medicolegal report that satisfies the requirements of the Court.
- Differentiate between ‘hearsay’, fact and opinion as forms of evidence.
- Plan and prepare to provide oral evidence in the courtroom.
- Integrate the theory provided in the prereading and interactive lectures with the practical delivery of expert evidence via role play (Courtroom Moot).
- Show the ability to describe a technical medical issue to lay people, avoiding the use of medical jargon.
About the Course
Legal Medicine encompasses the interchange between medicine and law and nowhere is this more apparent than when clinicians are invited to provide expert witness testimony. This is provided as either the treating clinician or to provide an independent assessment of a circumstance within the domain of the clinician’s expertise.
Being an expert witness requires providing a report and/or attending a court or tribunal and is often stressful for the clinician concerned. The Australasian College of Legal Medicine (ACLM) runs an Expert Report Writing Course and Expert Witness Training Program to familiarise medical professionals as to what is required within such situations.
The Expert Witness Training Program includes didactic lectures to offer advice as to what is expected of the expert by the instructing solicitor, the barrister and the adjudicator (such as the judge). It instructs the clinician how to behave within set situations. There is also provision of didactic / interactive advice from an experienced expert witness.
Each participant is expected to submit a de-identified Court-ready report at few weeks prior to the course. These reports are critically marked to provide advice as to how they can be improved and they serve as a basis to be led and cross-examined in a moot (a mock trial) involving real lawyers in a courtroom environment.
The Moot Court is based on the case reports/material submitted by each candidate which the ‘expert’ marks and provides to each of the barristers and the judge before the day. The barristers alternate between leading and cross examining.
Before each candidate enters the witness stand they are asked to give an overview of the material facts of the case in which they are appearing as a witness, in order for the audience to understand the nature of the case.
After each moot, the performance of the candidate is openly discussed with all participants invited to comment and a summary given before the start of the next case. The marked reports are returned to the candidates upon completion of the course.
LOCATION / DELIVERY MODE
This particular session (21 & 22 October 2023) is being held as an online virtual course via Zoom.
We are providing this online course to assist those who cannot attend in person events due to travel distance or work commitments. We strongly recommend that the best experience for the moots is in person so, if possible, we encourage you to plan to attend a future 'in person' session instead of (or in addition to) this online one.
A refund less $150 administration fee will be provided for all cancellations received by 22 September 2023. Any cancellations after this point will be non-refundable.
This course will be held subject to enough registrations being received. If there is insufficient interest in the online modality, it may be cancelled. Any such cancellation would be communicated to all attendees by 22 September.
ACLM CPD Recognition
ACLM current CPD progam: 20 points
ACLM new CPD program (coming soon) / CPD home:
Educational Activity: 7.5 hours
Reviewing Performance: 12.5 hours
Measuring Outcomes: 2 hours
Total: 22 hours
Program Level Requirements met:
- Relevant to Legal or Forensic Medicine
- Maintaining and developing professionalism
The ACLM Expert Report Writing course is a pre-requisite to attend the Expert Witness Training Program. You will be required to provide evidence that you have already attended the ACLM Expert Report Writing course to be accepted into this Expert Witness Training.