It may interest you
An Introduction to Single Expert witnesses in Western Australia:
In family court proceedings, the issue of spend time with and live with arrangements for children can be a highly contested matter. In such cases, a single expert witness is often appointed to provide evidence to the court. In this article, we will answer the most common questions about the single expert witness in family court proceedings in Western Australia and give you a better understanding of why, when or how to engage a single expert witness, what to expect when attending, and how your children can benefit.
What is a Single Expert Witness?
A single expert witness is a professional who provides evidence to the court on a specific issue that falls within their area of expertise. In family court proceedings, a single expert witness may be appointed to provide evidence on issues such as child custody, access, and parenting arrangements. For property proceedings the same is true with respect to a valuer or assessor.
Why is a Single Expert Witness Appointed?
A single expert witness is appointed to provide the court and the litigants with independent and objective evidence on a specific issue that is within their area of expertise.
The expert can provide an unbiased opinion based on their professional experience and can help the court to make a decision that is in the best interests of the child(ren).
When Should You Engage a Single Expert Witness?
You should engage a single expert witness if you require independent and objective evidence on a specific issue that is within their area of expertise. This could include issues such as parenting arrangements, parental responsibility, whether a party should be allowed or prevented from relocating, etc.
How Do You Engage a Single Expert Witness?
To engage a single expert witness, you will need to a court order appointing the expert, or by consent of the other party. The court will consider the issue at hand and determine whether a single expert witness is required. If so, the court will appoint an expert with the necessary qualifications and experience.
There are a number of single experts that practice within the jurisdiction and it often comes down to cost and their availability in addition to their experience.
What Should You Expect When Attending?
When attending court, you should expect to provide evidence to the court on the specific issue at hand if the matter proceeds to trial. You will be asked questions by both your own legal representative and the opposing party’s representative. The single expert witness will also provide evidence to the court.
How Can Children Benefit from a Single Expert Witness?
Children (and parties to a family law dispute) can benefit from a single expert witness report by having their best interests taken into consideration when decisions are made about their care arrangements. The expert can provide evidence to the court on issues such as the child(ren)’s developmental needs, their relationship with each parent, and any specific requirements that they may have.
We are here to help!
If you require assistance with family court proceedings involving a single expert witness in Western Australia, our family law firm is here to help. Our experienced family lawyers can assist you with all aspects of your case, including the appointment of a single expert witness.
Contact us today to schedule a consultation or visit our Frequently asked questions section to know more.