Qld handwriting analysis

Why courts require evidence from handwriting experts as opposed to laymen. Most enquires regarding signature and handwriting comparisons typically fall into these two categories: a disputed signature on a formal document such as a will, financial agreement or contract.

In other words, is the signature a forgery?

Handwriting analysis service

No expert can determine a fraudulent state of mind from a forensic examination. A strong opinion is prevented where there is a risk that the specimen handwriting supplied in an examination does not necessarily reveal the full range of variation of the writer. Therefore, any opinions expressed in a preliminary report are qualified by a higher chance of error compared to a full examination. Criminal matters can turn on the expert evidence of document examiners. A preliminary examination report is often provided first, before a full examination and an expert certificate for court, as it allows a useful cost benefit assessment for a client. If you suspect that you may be under investigation, or if you have been charged with an offence, it is vital to get competent legal advice as early as possible. I have prepared and presented numerous papers on areas of document examination for conference, workshop and lecture purposes, involving the Queensland Police Service, the Office of the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions, the Australian Government Solicitors Office, the Office of the Director of State Public Prosecutions, Work Cover Queensland and other Government departments. Such an opinion is almost always qualified by the possibility that the specimen writer could have written the questioned signature but because of the possibility, for example, of deliberate self-disguise, or the influence of ill health or drugs, or the effect of an unusual writing instrument or surface, this authorship is impossible to detect. Many of these have been conducted in Australia and have involved testing using 5 levels of opinion, hence the preference of many Government experts for opinion terminology that involves 5 levels of opinion. The low number of comparable features in only 4 words and the relative simplicity of uppercase writing compared to the more complex designs of cursive handwriting, for example usually prevent a definite opinion in most cases. Why a determination as to forgery cannot be made from handwriting evidence alone.

A strong opinion is prevented where there is a risk that the specimen handwriting supplied in an examination does not necessarily reveal the full range of variation of the writer.

Inconclusive opinions are qld handwriting analysis given where the following circumstances arise: insufficient number of specimen samples to assess natural variation, insufficient number of questioned samples to allow enough features to be compared.

Training was provided over a four year period within the NSW Police Forensic Services Group under the guidance and supervision of several other document examiners and handwriting experts.

Signatures or handwriting that are low in complexity are problematic for two reasons: -firstly, the simple handwriting of one person is more difficult to distinguish from the simple handwriting of another writer because there are fewer individualising features to compare.

The courts hearing expert evidence may well be critical of experts who do not address the need to reduce or remove context bias. Bias may arise where an investigator receives background information regarding the circumstances surrounding the analysis.

No expert can determine a fraudulent state of mind from a forensic examination. Often it may be influenced in terms of how deeply it looks at this issue by the acceptance or rejection of that evidence by the competing parties that are appearing in the matter before the court.

The majority of local Government-employed experts use a methodology created in Australia that has 5 levels of opinion, which include two types of definite conclusions one for a proposition whilst the other is againsttwo that are not definite but qualified and one that is inconclusive.

This is a general example only and there are exceptions to this rule — it may be possible to offer a qualified rather than definite opinion. A document examiner will compare a source document a document that is relevant to a criminal investigation with other documents said to have been written by the same person.

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