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Israeli Forensic Psychiatry

(Alternate link to Israeli Clinical Criminology Site)

The Israeli legal system is complicated.

General Overview

There is no Constitution, there are 2 parallel civil legal systems, religious and civil, but only one Criminal justice System. All the criminal systems have their final place of appeal in the High Court which is chaired by the Chief Justice. Appeal is heard on grounds of grounds of content, i.e., grounds and not as a "detail".

The Israeli Criminal Legal Code is based on the Ottoman Code, the British Mandatory Code, and is strongly influenced recently by the American tradition of Liberalism.

Moreover, there is no trial by jury, although the cases are presented and defended in an "adversary" style.

All marriages are co-officiated and legalized at the hands of the religious courts. However, there are also civil divorces in religious and non religious courts. Both courts are equally enlightened in the use of advice concerning personal obligations, etc. In the realm of divorce practically speaking divorces are "extremely easy" if both parties agree and quite impossible if one party doesn't. If one of the parties is Mentally Ill then the rights of the Mentally Ill member are scrupulously upheld.

Forensic Psychiatry Issues in Criminal Law in Israel

Forensic Psychiatry Issues in Civil Law in Israel

The civil courts use Psychiatric Consultants as advisors to the court in matter of litigation for compensation following trauma. In the case of road accidents it is mandatory for the court to appoint its advisor and the councils for the sides may not do so. They may present material to the appointed Consultant who is liable to undergo cross examination.

With thanks to:

Prof. Silfan is the founder and Professor of the Chair of Clinical Criminology at the Bar-Ilan University, Ramat-Gan, Director of the Beer Yaakov Government Mental Health Center, which includes Mental Health Care Services for the Penal Services, Consultant to National Insurance.

Dr. Michael Benjamin is Consultant to the Kupat Cholim, Israeli Military Industries, the Ministry of Defence, the Ministry of Education, National Insurance and the National Road Safety Council.

If you want to post a similar page about your country, please e-mail James F. Hooper, M.D.