UNE 197001:2011 General criteria for the preparation of reports and expert opinions.

The purpose of the UNE 197001:2011 standard is to establish the general considerations that make it possible to specify the formal requirements that expert reports and opinions must have, without determining the specific methods and processes for their preparation.

Experts from different professional fields are responsible for drawing up expert reports with multiple purposes: fire, forgery, construction defects, appraisal, environmental impact…

This variety motivates the need to homogenize documents so that they are intelligible and facilitate the assessment by both the judge and the parties involved in the judicial proceedings.

The UNE 197001:2011 standard establishes the structure and minimum content requirements of an expert opinion or report in order to ensure the quality and understanding of the conclusions developed by the expert.

The rule is very simple and covers quite obvious aspects, but it is not a starting point. What is not clear is that it is worth paying what it costs to get what you get. Recommendations such as: All expert reports and opinions should consist of the following basic structure:

  • Identification
  • Index
  • Body of the report and where applicable
  • Attached documents

The report or expert opinion should begin with the following identifying information:

  • The title and its identification code or reference.
  • The name of the body or bodies to which the report or expert opinion is addressed and the file or procedure number, if any.
  • The name and surname(s) of the expert, his or her specific qualification or skill for the case submitted for assessment, and, if applicable, the college or entity to which he or she belongs, National Identity Document (DNI), professional address, telephone, fax, e-mail and any other professional identifier that may exist, except for those whose disclosure is not legally appropriate.
  • The name, surname(s) and National Identity Document (DNI) of the person requesting the report or expert opinion, whether in their own name or on behalf of another natural or legal person, whose details shall also appear, and any other identifier that may exist, the disclosure of which is legally appropriate.
  • If the subject of the report or expert opinion includes a specific geographical location, this location must be defined (address and town) and, if applicable, its UTM (Universal Transverse Mercator) coordinates.
  • Where appropriate, the name and surname of the applicant’s lawyer and solicitor.
  • The place and date of issue of the report or expert opinion.

It is customary to indicate the typical mentions of the expert reports destined to their valuation in trial with respect to the possibility of requesting the expert’s objection and the conditions that apply for it, emphasizing the impartiality of the expert, not to give to it, as well as the promise to tell the truth, that he will act truthfully and as objectively as possible, that he has taken and will take into consideration both what may favour and what may prejudice any of the parties and that he is aware of the criminal penalties he may incur in the event of failing to fulfil his duty as an expert.