Writing Court Reports
This is a one-day course designed to provide social workers with the skills necessary to create and defend written statements and reports in a tribunal or court.
How Long is the Course?
Who is the Course Aimed at?
The course is designed for a wide range of social workers – from those newly qualified to those more experienced wishing to improve their writing skills.
Delegates will learn, in a supportive and dynamic environment:-
- The importance of written statements in the context of the court process
- How to incorporate fair and balanced, evidence-based analysis into those statements
- How to write authoritatively and clearly without recourse to jargon or technical language
- The importance of balancing competing rights in social work practice, prior to and during any court proceedings
- 9.30 – 10.45 Introductions. The legal system and how it works. Alternatives to court. How courts decide. The different types of evidence. The importance of written evidence. Burden of proof. Standard of proof.
- 10.45 – 11.00 Break
- 11.00 – 12.30 Constructing a statement. Preparation and organisation. Identifying issues. Gathering information. Using records. Conducting interviews. Accuracy and clarity. Maintaining relevance. Using chronologies. Evidence based analysis – balanced, honest, focussed. The dangers of false logic and bias. Thinking it through and the importance of questions
- 12.30 – 1.30 Break
- 1.30 – 2.45 Writing the statement. Basic constructions and templates. Writing for a reader. Avoiding cliches, jargon meaningless terms and generalities. The danger of selectivity. Keeping it concise, clear and helping the decision maker.
- 2.45 – 3.00 Break
- 3.00 – 4.30 Group work. Examples and discussion. How to defend statements under questioning. Further learning and feedback.