Dr Stephen Briers: Expert witness services


Dr Briers’ research in child development and his clinical work with children has led to repeated joint instructions by the Child and Family Courts of East and West Sussex since 2004. Since he works clinically with adults as well, Dr Briers is in a privileged position to evaluate both the emotional needs of children and the mental health needs and capacity of the adults in their lives.

He is particularly interested in issues pertaining to placement and contact and is regularly commissioned by Local Authorities to provide pre-proceedings assessments.

Dr Briers sometimes assists with personal injury cases.

Ethos and approach

If an assessment is commissioned, it is imperative that it adds genuine value to proceedings and is delivered in a professional and timely manner. Expert witnesses must provide insightful, clearly articulated opinions backed by a sound evidence base.

Dr Briers bases his assessments and opinions on careful analysis of clinical observation, interview and judicious use of psychometric measures.

He is conscious that the stakes in legal proceedings are usually high. His goal is to provide detailed, accessible reports of the highest quality. He is happy to provide references on enquiry.


He would be pleased to receive all new enquiries. However, because he conducts his legal work in conjunction with his clinical caseload, he generally takes on no more than two instructions at any time. This is to enable him to give each case the level of attention it deserves.

Areas of expertise

  • Attachment
  • Risk assessments
  • Parenting capacity
  • Personality disorders
  • Placement issues
  • Child mental and emotional health
  • Substance misuse
  • Motivation to change
  • Fitness to plead/ witness reliability
  • Trauma and psychological injury
  • Cognitive Assessments
  • Parental alienation
  • Adult psychopathology

View DR Stephen Briers’ CV