Cognitive Test Law and Legal Definition

Cognitive test is a test in criminal law. It tests the defendant’s ability to know certain things, especially the nature of his/her conducts and the capacity to decide whether his/her conduct was right.

A cognitive test is used in evaluating whether a defendant may rely on an insanity defense.

The following is an example of a case law referring to the cognitive test.

The federal insanity defense statute, 18 U.S.C.S. § 17(a) recognizes only a "cognitive" test. The defendant must demonstrate that he was unable to appreciate the nature and quality or the wrongfulness of his acts. [United States v. Brown, 899 F.2d 189 (2d Cir. 1990)].