The judge's view of competency evaluations. II

Bull Am Acad Psychiatry Law. 1987;15(4):381-9.


Twenty trial court judges were surveyed to determine what information they considered pertinent in psychiatric examinations for competence. These judges showed a clear understanding of what they were asking for in ordering the examinations but also showed a significant tendency to use the competency exam to advise them about other issues in addition (e.g., dangerousness or the need for treatment). As a group the judges appeared to be eager for psychiatric input. Typical judges could be described as pragmatic in their views of psychiatry in the courtroom, having a relatively low level of expectation but a high degree of satisfaction with the psychiatric opinions they receive.

MeSH terms

  • Criminal Law*
  • Data Collection
  • Expert Testimony
  • Forensic Psychiatry*
  • Humans
  • Jurisprudence*
  • Mental Disorders / diagnosis
  • United States