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Factual Investigation

Highly Experienced Factual Investigators

Factual investigations are the gathering of written evidence and the recording of oral evidence to determine facts for the purpose of court action, with the evidence obtained to be determined by a judge, jury or both.

Factual investigations is the term given to the gathering of written evidence, and the recording of oral evidence. It is the overt act of investigating. It includes talking to people to find out information, formal interviews, the taking of an affidavit or statement, the searching for and preservation of evidence (including an affidavit to preserve memories, and photographs to preserve evidence of physical conditions);

It is the act of investigating, finding information, following evidence, and building up a case for presentation to a court. Factuals can also include the dissection of a prosecution brief and the compilation of a defence brief. This for the determination of facts, things that may be proven and determined by either a judge alone, or a judge and jury. A fact, if accepted, determines that something did or did not occur, or that something did or did not exist or that something is accepted as being a truth or falsehood, for the purpose of that court action. A factual investigation is a slow search for the truth, at times, following the evidence, searching for the proof.

Workcover factual investigation, Workers compensation factual investigations, are undertaken as early as possible after an incident, whilst memories are fresh, and evidence still exists. The advantage of doing this is that the memories are less tainted by cross contamination, from talking to others, and taking down affidavits permits the evidence to be preserved, and memories refreshed, when there is a court case many years later. Workers compensation claims, civil claims hearings, may occur many years after the initial Workcover claim incident, when injuries are stabilised, and costs can be calculated more effectively. Factual affidavits are also used late in a Workcover investigation, to support observations, or demonstrate fraud.

Criminal defence factual investigations are undertaken where there is a concern that a person charged may not have committed the offence, or that Police procedures were not followed. The investigation focuses on the allegations made by the prosecution, and examines each element of the offence, to look for both evidence that negates the allegation, and for evidence that points towards someone other than the person charged. it may also look at the lawfulness of Police actions. It is surprising, at times, how poor the police criminal investigation, or their decision making process, is. We take apart the police statement, the initial brief, the final brief, to look at the areas they ignored. Criminal investigations can also be related to a domestic violence or divorce action.

Divorce property settlement factual investigation is about gathering affidavits to support an assertion, that a particular set of circumstances, and particular contributions to the financial and family situation occurred. This includes both actual financial contributions, and 'in kind' contributions like maintenance of the home, and care of the children. An assertion does not stand on its own, it needs evidence, the proof, to give it weight. When considering divorce, remember that it will probably have child custody, and divorce property settlement actions associated with it; the best time to start gathering evidence is actually prior to separation. keep a diary, and copies of financial records.

Child custody factual investigation, is about gathering the evidence, the proof, in affidavits (statements), in the correct format, to support a position. The evidence of family, and close friends, carries less evidentiary value than that of people not so closely involved. Emotion is an ingredient of child custody disputes, where the court must sift through accusations and allegations, to determine what is best for the child or children. The private investigator is there to search for, and obtain, evidence to assist the court in this process.

Civil action factual investigations are, like criminal investigations, a dissection of the allegations, and a search for evidence that may dispute this. a civil action is both easier and harder, as, unlike a criminal action generally, a position has only to be proved on the balance of probability (51%) rather than the tougher criminal standard of beyond reasonable doubt.

Traffic accident factual investigations are viable, when done close to the time of the accident. It has been surprising how wrong, or poorly done, some police investigations are especially outside major centres, where serious traffic accidents are conducted by specially trained officers.