The implications of NIH BRAIN research stretch beyond traditional medical and research contexts. This LabRoots session will present recent developments at the intersection of neuroscience and law, with a focus on the introduction of neuroscientific evidence in United States courtrooms. Brain evidence has played a role in landmark U.S. Supreme Court cases; is being regularly considered in many types of criminal and civil cases, and touches on issues such as lie detection, addiction, brain injury, memory, trauma, and more. There is much promise for neuroscience and law. For example brain science might allow: criminal law to reduce recidivism and treat offenders more humanely; tort law to better differentiate between those in real pain and those who are faking; and insurance law to more accurately and adequately compensate those with mental illness. Yet the promise of brain science must be balanced against the perils of premature and inappropriate uses. There is an imperative to determine proper standards for the ethical use of neuroscience in law.
After this session, participants will be able to: Appreciate the emerging field of neurolaw, and the many ways in which neuroscience might affect law; Understand the ways in which neuroscience is being proffered as evidence in criminal and civil contexts; Recognize basic concerns about the use of neuroscientific evidence in courtroom proceedings; and Discuss the promises and limitations of future uses of neuroscience in law.