Types of Document
Any writing surface containing invisible, partially visible or visible matter or writing strokes and convey certain meaning can be defined as document.
· Forensic documents can be classified into two categories i.e.
(i) Disputed documents or questioned documents or
suspected documents and
(ii) Standard documents.
The disputed documents are the documents which are under scrutiny and are of unknown origin.
The standard documents are the documents of known origin. Standard documents can again be sub-divided into two categories.
(a) Specimens or sample writings/signatures and are obtained by the I.O. from the suspect or accused in presence of witnesses or before the court
(b) Admittedly genuine writings/signatures are normal writings written by the accused in routine course of business.
Questioned Documents are further included in the following classes:
Ø Document with questioned signatures.
Ø Document containing alleged fraudulent alterations.
Ø Questioned Holograph documents
Ø Disputed or Questioned age of dates in documents.
Ø Question of materials from which documents are produced
· Questioned Documents are further included in
Ø Questioned Documents including typewriting’s (ascertaining source, date, alteration or substitution of pages)
Ø Documents with questioned handwritings includes:
ü Anonymous and suicidal notes/disputed letters.
ü Superscriptions, registrations and other miscellaneous writings.
Ø Genuine documents erroneously or fraudulently attacked.
1. Document with questioned signatures.
ü These are most common disputed documents may be commercial or legal papers such as cheques , note , receipt , draft order , contract , agreement , assignment , will , deed etc.
ü Signatures are generally obtained by tracing or simulating or copying process.
ü Beside writing characteristics, ink examination is also very important.
2. Document containing alleged fraudulent alterations.
Alterations are made by
ü Erasures:- Chemical or mechanical
ü Interlineations or substitution
ü Sequence of strokes is also important to be examined in such cases.
3. Questioned Holograph documents
ü These may include rare stamps, valuable manuscripts, certificates, letter of introduction and recommendation, letters of credit, letters of famous people etc.
ü Scrutiny includes examination of Paper & Watermarks
Ink, Writing, Seal impressions & Folds etc.
4. Disputed or Questioned age of dates in documents.
ü These types of documents include which are purported to be ancient documents of great importance.
ü Use of instrument for writing and origin of paper are most important for examination.
5. Question of materials from which documents are produced.
ü A document dated many years before the paper was made comes under this category. (or when relative age of the document is required to be decided)
6. Questioned Documents including typewriting (ascertaining source , date , alteration or substitution of pages)
7. Documents with questioned handwritings include:
ü Anonymous letters and disputed suicidal notes.
ü Superscriptions , registrations and other miscellaneous writings.
Beside examination of paper , writings or instrument used for writing Forensic Stylistics also plays an important role to identify the writer.
8. Genuine documents erroneously or fraudulently attacked.
Sometimes writer , at his command , writes more than one pattern of signature or some of the characters in writing in a document may be treated as questioned document erroneously.
· Drafts, cheques, gift cheques.
· Account opening forms , specimen signature cards
· Share Certificates
· Bank Securities
· Time Deposit / Fixed Deposit Receipts
· National Saving Certificates , Kisan Vikas Patra, Indira Vikas Patra
· Fixed Deposit / Time Deposit Receipts
· Money Order forms & Cheques
· Envelopes / Inland letters
· Postal Stamps / Revenue stamps
· Degree / Diploma certificates
Date of Birth Certificate
Question papers / Answer sheets of important competitive examinations
Registration / migration certificate
Judicial / Non-Judicial Stamp papers
Important Judgments of the apex courts
Vehicle registration certificates
First Information Report formats
Non-Cognizable Report formats
Memorandum of understanding
Reports / Inspection reports / Postmortem reports / expert reports
Railway tickets / air tickets