‘No expert should cavil at any questioning’:1 Reports and assessments for courts and tribunals


  • Phillip A. Swain

Philip A. Swain is Associate Professor, School of Social Work, Melbourne University, Victoria, Australia.
Email: paswain@unimelb.edu.au


This article examines the content and structuring of social work reports, particularly for the use of courts or tribunals, and highlights the need to ensure that legislative criteria and relevant definitions in each jurisdiction are addressed so that reports can be both persuasive and relevant. It is suggested that due attention to the clarity of social work assessment and its presentation, and to the requirements of the appropriate legislative criteria which underpin each jurisdiction, will support the position of the social worker both as credible and expert within judicial settings.