The Limited Legal Standards For Competency To Stand Trial

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The Limited Legal Standards for Competency to Stand Trial


The paper identifies limited legal standards for competency to stand trial since it has been known as the most essential health inquiry motivated and approached in the system of criminal law and justice system. The purpose of this research is important to educate on the two legal standards in which evaluations are based from to determine if a person is competent to stand trial and these include the offender's absolute or present mental state with the ability to understand the proceedings and assist in his/her own defense. The purpose can also be classified as an explanation on mentally challenged patients sentenced to prison instead of hospital for treatment on differentiation of different causes and reasons. This thesis will represent and shed light upon the entire major legal framework that associates with the system of knowledge and its interpretation when it comes to recognizing current legal standards for being competent to stand the trial, their medical standards for the level of insanity if present and some other factors as well.

The Limited Legal Standards for Competency to Stand Trial


The relevancy of the problem which is associated with competency to stand trial has been highlighting enough within the circles of mental health acquisitions and several other detailed and informative substitutes of criminal law system as well. The reason why this could possibly be happening is the case to which annual submissions and judgments are made according to different problems and mental issues. Another reason could be the number of the numerical importance of those defendants that are referred on a consistent basis for competency settlements and multiple other personality traits decision making facilities.

Competency evaluation in the United States criminal and justice system is basically a valuation of the capability of a defendant to understand and determine the participation in a court process. It involves all the proceedings to the trial system and in case of a death penalty, a significant evaluation of behavior of the defendant. Before the settlement of the final implication, the competency to stand trial virtue makes certain of acknowledging the understanding as to why the person has received the death penalty and effects which will occur consequently before or after the final judgment is made accordingly. In later rulings, competence factor is also improvised to include the assessment of the defendant's competency to pledge for guilty or to waive the right to counsel in terms of any psychological or physical treatment that might be associated.

Problem statement

With limited competency standards to determine if they are able to stand trial many individuals who fit the medical standards for insanity are actually charged, tried and found competent to stand trial in a criminal court of law.


The statistics have proved the limited legal standards for competency to stand trial for different individuals. For instance, in late 90's a total of about 20,143 individuals that were mentally challenged being offenders were admitted within federal and state forensic institutions in the United ...
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