Adjudicative competence, also referred to as competence to stand trial, is a legal construct describing the criminal defendant's ability to understand and participate in legal proceedings. This includes the defendant's current ability to participate in various pleas and waivers of rights. It is unrelated to any possibility of an insanity plea. It is also unrelated to the ability of the defendant to represent himself, or to any evaluation of mitigation factors. The definition of adjudicative competence was provided by the United States Supreme Court in Dusky v. United States.
An empirical basis for the clinical assessment of competence has not yet been established.
See also 
- "The MacArthur Adjudicative Competence Study". The MacArthur Research Network on Mental Health and the Law. Archived from the original on 2 December 2007. Retrieved 2007-11-25.
- Douglas Mossman, MD, Stephen G. Noffsinger, MD, Peter Ash, MD, et al. (2007). "AAPL Practice Guideline for the Forensic Psychiatric Evaluation of Competence to Stand Trial". Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law 35 (4 Suppl): S3–72. PMID 18083992. Retrieved 2008-02-17.
- Richard E. Redding, J.D., Ph.D. (2000). "Adjudicative Competence in Juveniles -- Adjudicative Competence in Practice". Juvenile Forensic Evaluation Resource Center. Archived from the original on 2007-08-14. Retrieved 2007-11-25.
- Adjudicative Competence: The MacArthur Studies
- Standards for Determination of Competence
- The MacArthur Juvenile Adjudicative Competence Study
- Evaluating Juveniles' Adjudicative Competence: A Guide for Clinical Practice
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