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Significant Benefits of Employing the Services of a Forensic Document Examiner
A Forensic Document Examiner, or FDE, is a specialist who evaluates documented evidence to determine its authenticity and origin. They play a crucial role in the success of the forensic science field. Their primary function is to utilize scientific techniques and tools to examine written, typed, or printed documents. They produce visual aids, write expert reports, and provide their opinions on the questioned documents. If the case proceeds to a trial, the FDE may need to give testimony in court. An effective document examiner will examine the evidence using established standards and procedures and be able to communicate their findings to those without technical expertise in a professional and understandable way. Listed below are some of the key responsibilities of a forensic document examiner.
Implement Valid Evaluation of the Document
Before conducting any examination, the questioned and reference documents are assigned a label, given a number, and marked. The examiner then carries out a more in-depth examination using tools such as side lighting, transmitted light, and magnification after the documents have been properly identified. After completing the initial analysis, the examiner conducts a more comprehensive examination using tools such as side lighting, transmitted light, and magnification to create a comprehensive analysis. The examiner records their observations, pictures, and drawings in detailed notes that accurately reflect what was observed. This is the first stage in the document examination process.
Perform a Thorough Examination of the Specimen
A forensic document examiner is often tasked with analyzing a person’s signature on a document to determine its authenticity. This involves a thorough evaluation of various aspects of the signature, such as line quality, speed, letterform, height relationships, and size. This type of analysis is commonly requested in cases involving the authentication of sports memorabilia, disputed wills and deeds, employment contracts, and checks, as signatures are the most common form of forgery. Forensic document examiners conduct comprehensive examinations that cover a wide range of subjects, including signatures and printing materials. The significant findings are documented in a report along with visual aids, which include the analysis, comparison, and evaluation of the features observed by the examiner. The examiners ensure that the received documents are kept in a manner that preserves their integrity, without causing any damage.
Inspect Carefully Every Important Signature
Most forensic document examiners specialize in examining handwriting evidence. The most commonly examined type of evidence is signatures. The authenticity and origin of a signature or written letter are often questioned in court. Other examples of handwritten evidence include wills, contracts, and deeds. Additionally, important documents such as medical charts may also be examined to determine the author of handwritten notes or to resolve questions about the date of an entry.
Scrutinize Every Equipment Used
A document produced by a typewriter may also need the expertise of a forensic document examiner. A competent and experienced examiner can identify the specific model of typewriter used to create the disputed document. Some typewriters have unique features that help the examiner determine which typewriter produced the text. Other evaluations include determining the font type, ink, and ribbons used. Additionally, the examiner can assess if any changes or erasures have been made to the typewritten document.
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