Approval for an expert – what work is covered?

The report and giving evidence in court

Where we grant approval for an expert to provide a report, that approval includes the expert’s costs for giving evidence in court where those costs do not exceed £2,000 (excluding VAT). The notification we send you about this will include the information that the court attendance is included in the prior approval.

Where the expert’s costs for attending court exceed £2,000 (excluding VAT) you should submit a request for prior approval for unusually large expenditure.

Where the expert has prepared a report which has not been prior approved, for example, where the case was privately funded before legal aid was granted or where the report was obtained under advice and assistance (including ABWOR), we require to consider any application for the expert’s court attendance.

Additional work

The following additional work requires prior approval:

  • where the expert is required to prepare a supplementary report
  • where the expert is required to meet / consult with the solicitor and counsel where appropriate to discuss the terms of the report prepared
  • any proposed meeting with the expert prior to the report being prepared
  • any other work that the solicitor wants the expert to undertake if not already approved.

Jointly instructed experts

 While joint instruction of expert witnesses in criminal proceedings is not often possible, where an expert is jointly instructed by more than one accused, we only require an application from one of the solicitors representing the accused.

Part grants of prior approval

We will part grant a request for the employment of an expert where:

  • we are restricting the work items/types of work proposed e.g. we feel that it is reasonable to prior approve the preparation of a report but not to consult with the expert at the time of asking
  • we are restricting the amounts sough e.g. restricting travel rates to half hourly rates
  • we are removing fares and mileage on the basis they are outlays
  • we are removing VAT on the basis it is an outlay.

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