Legal aspects of polygraph testing in the UK.
Although we now live in the 21st Century, we have still failed to come up with a device which will be able to faultlessly determine whether a person is saying the truth or not. The human mind is so complicated that it will surely take us years to finally invent the perfect detector. The world famous “lie detector” known as the polygraph is relatively a very old piece of equipment and throughout the years it has undergone very little modifications.
The results of tests performed on the polygraph have always been and will be controversial mostly because of the questions regarding its accuracy. It is said that a standard polygraph test has the accuracy between 60% and 95%. For law enforcements this margin of error is too high for the polygraph to be used in court. It is because of the concern that an inaccurate polygraph test result could lead the judge to sentencing an innocent person or freeing a guilty criminalist that the polygraph is forbidden from usage in a criminal court. Which does not mean that the British Law fully forbids the usage of polygraphs in court. The usage of a lie detector is possible in some tribunal and civil cases. Only criminal cases are fully forbidden the usage of lie detectors. In the United Kingdom the usage of the polygraph has risen outside of the court system. It is widely used by couples with relationship issues or by employers handling conflicts within their companies. In the last couple of years the polygraph has also been accepted as an additional tool helping law enforcements verify probation conditions for some criminals . In England and Wales the polygraph is also used to test sex offenders on probation. Some tests help determine whether a convicted sex offender is ready to re-join the society without a risk taken by the public. The usage of a polygraph is one hundred per cent legal but nobody can legally examine you with a lie detector without your clear consent. A polygraph test must also be performed by an experienced person with the appropriate qualifications and license.