Sometimes Life Takes A Very Wrong Turn

Criminal & Civil Matters

Criminal issues are not only multi-faceted, but also carry the additional possible issues of publicity, community involvement and resource allocation. Some areas where a psychological assessment may be of help to the Court include:

  • Risk Assessments
  • Pre-sentencing reports
  • Personality Assessments
  • Impact of psychological issues on behavior.
  • Effects of substance abuse.
  • Opinions as to rehabilitative Prospects
  • Opinion as to therapeutic response.
  • Assessment of eye witness statements.
  • Opinions as to disputed confessions or coercion.


Negligence is multi-faceted and sometimes it may be so egregious it becomes criminal. Despite the safeguards society puts in place to ensure professional conduct from the person we entrust with the of our loved ones, issues of medical, dental, veterinary, legal or other misconduct may occur. Many things can go wrong in what was done and what was left undone or poorly done. Some less well-known areas of concern include:

  • Competence to give informed consent.
  • State of mind at the time of a medical procedure.
  • Appropriateness and thoroughness of pre/post-operative counseling or advice.
  • Ability for medical compliance.
  • Psychological injury arising from lack of care or clinical negligence in cosmetic surgery,? cardiology, OB/GYN and pediatric specialties.

Psychological Effects of Personal Injury and Tort Applications

The psychological effects and possible damage stemming from personal injuries are many and varied. The most commonly known condition arising from personal injuries is Trauma, and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder has gotten the most media coverage. But any number of psychological conditions can arise from personal injuries. ??Typically, psychological injury arises from street, school, or work-related accidents, but can also be caused by ballistic injuries, concussion and Mild Traumatic Brain Injury (M/TBI), and “vicarious” traumatization or “trauma by proxy.”

Even worse, such damages are also often “masked.” That is, they either aren’t readily observable or intuitively understandable to the naive observer and may be “masked” by other behavior that is more readily observable. ??Thus, psychological injury often goes unreported, is misdiagnosed, or is wrongly attributed to other causes.

We can provide opinions and consultations regarding:

  • Therapeutic malpractice and standard of psychological care.
  • Consultations regarding general psychological damages.
  • The effect of trauma and abuse on children, including:
    1. emotional loss and ?abuse
    2. physical and sexual abuse
    3. witnessing domestic or other violence
  • Psychological damage in children and adults caused by:
    1. medical procedures
    2. dental procedures
    3. malfunctioning products
    4. toxicity.
  • Masked psychological damages and impairment due to:
    1. physical injury
    2. emotional trauma
    3. chronic disabling conditions
    4. acute pain
    5. “bystander” experiences.
    6. Chronic Pain Syndromes versus Malingering.
    7. Adjustment Disorders.
    8. Failure to Thrive or Improve.
    9. Suspicion of Fraudulent Claims or Credibility Issues

Grand Rounds: What is a “Psych Eval?” – and why would I want one? Part 1

Grand Rounds: What is a “Psych Eval?” - and why would I want one? Part 1 By Michael Abruzzese, Ph.D. © Copyright 2021 Vista Health…
The Divorce Game (Not a TV Show)