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A forensic document examiner's experience is tantamount to a successful complex civil litigation case. While examining a document, a forensic document examiner might look for the identification of signatures and handwriting, make a comparison and identification of different typewriters, photocopy machines or check writers used to make copies of documents, look for information or physical evidence on a document that identifies it as a forgery, decipher indented writing, compare documents to see if the same type of writing instrument was used throughout the document, and decipher alterations to a document.
Detection of alterations, substitutions, deletions and additions can make or break a complex civil litigation case, especially if a document has been altered to lay blame elsewhere. Forensic document examination is a skill that is taught and then honed through extensive training. A forensic document examiner might see something that a layperson might miss—and that something could win the case for either side.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|