Advertisement

Conducting a Psychological Assessment

  • Andrew W. Kane

Abstract

A primary goal, and an ethical requirement, for an evaluator is to be impartial, regardless of who retained him or her, acknowledging the strengths and weaknesses of the data while advocating for the conclusions he or she has drawn from the data, not for a given side in a case. Among the means of maintaining impartiality for the evaluator are (1) set and maintain professional boundaries regarding the retaining attorney; (2) avoid becoming invested in a particular outcome of a case; the evaluator is to advocate for his or her data and conclusions, not to try to “win;” (3) communicate the results of the evaluation clearly and in simple language, avoiding superlatives (e.g., “absolutely” or “completely”), in both the report and testimony (Heilbrun, Marczyk, & DeMatteo, 2002; Macartney-Filgate & Snow, 2004; Greenberg, 2003; see also the Specialty Guidelines for Forensic Psychologists, Guidelines VII.B, C, and D). According to Murphy (2000), the American Bar Association has indicated that expert witnesses must be independent, rather than loyal to or an advocate for his or her client, the attorney. “In essence, an expert must analyze, explain, and offer an accurate opinion of the relevant issue before the court, not strive to advocate and persuade the fact-finder of a certain point of view. The expert’s main duty to provide truthful and accurate information comes from the court and the ethical guidelines of his professional organization, if any” (Murphy, p. 6 of document retrieved April 4, 2003 from www.law-forensics.com/ethic and experts.htm.)

Keywords

Traumatic Event Psychological Assessment Response Style Validity Scale Psychological Injury 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Ackerman, M. J., & Kane, A. W. (1998). Psychological experts in personal injury actions (3rd ed.). New York: Aspen Law and Business.Google Scholar
  2. Ackerman, M. J., & Kane, A. W. (2005). Psychological experts in divorce actions (4th ed.). New York: Aspen Law and Business.Google Scholar
  3. American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. (1990). Guidelines for the clinical evaluation of child and adolescent sexual abuse. Retrieved April 16, 2006 from http://www.aacap.org/publications/policy/Ps22.htm.Google Scholar
  4. American Educational Research Association (1999). Standards for educational and psychological testing. Washington, DC: Author.Google Scholar
  5. American Psychiatric Association. (1994). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (4th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.Google Scholar
  6. American Psychological Association. (2002). Ethical principles of psychologists and code of conduct. American Psychologist, 57, 1060–1073.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. American Psychological Association Ethics Committee. (1993, April 18). Policy statement of the APA Ethics Committee regarding “take home” tests. Washington, DC: Author.Google Scholar
  8. American Psychological Association Ethics Committee. (1994). “Take home” tests. American Psychologist, 49, 665–666.Google Scholar
  9. Boccaccini, M. T., & Brodsky, S. L. (1999). Diagnostic test usage by forensic psychologists in emotional injury cases. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 30, 253–259.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Briere, J. (2004). Psychological assessment of adult posttraumatic states (2nd ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Briere, J., Elliott, D. M., Harris, K., & Cotman, A. (1995). Trauma Symptom Inventory: Psychometrics and association with childhood and adult victimization in clinical samples. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 10, 387–401.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Butcher, J. N. (1995). Personality patterns of personal injury litigants: The role of computer-based MMPI-2 evaluations. In Y. S. Ben-Porath, J. R. Graham, G. C. N. Hall, R. D. Hirschman, & M. S. Zaragoza (Eds.), Forensic applications of the MMPI-2. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  13. Butcher, J. N., Graham, J. R., Ben-Porath, Y. S., Tellegen, A., Dahlstrom, W. G., & Kaemmer, B. (2001). MMPI-2 Manual for administration, scoring, and interpretation (Rev. ed.). Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar
  14. Camara, W. J., Nathan, J. S., & Puente, A. E. (2000). Psychological test usage: Implications in professional psychology. Professional Psychology: Research & Practice, 31, 141–154.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Cohen, F. L. (2004). The expert medical witness in legal perspective. The Journal of Legal Medicine, 25, 185–209.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Committee on Ethical Guidelines for Forensic Psychologists. (1991). Specialty guidelines for forensic psychologists. Law and Human Behavior, 15, 655–665.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Constantinou, M., Ashendorf, L., & McCafFrey, R. J. (2002). When the 3rd party observer of a neuropsychological evaluation is an audio-recorder. The Clinical Neuropsychologist, 16, 407–412.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Constantinou, M., & McCafFrey, R. J. (2003). The effects of 3rd party observation: When the observer is a video camera. Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology, 18, 788–789.Google Scholar
  19. Craig, Robert J. (1999). Testimony based on the Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory: Review, commentary, and guidelines. Journal of Personality Assessment, 73, 290–304.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Crawford, E. F., Greene, R. L., Dupart, T. M., Bongar, B., & Childs, H. (2006). MMPI-2 assessment of malingered emotional distress related to a workplace injury: A mixed group validation. Journal of Personality Assessment, 86, 217–221.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Dean, B. P. (2004). Discovery in scientific evidence cases. In J. J. Brown (Ed.), Scientific evidence and experts handbook (2004 cumulative supplement) (pp. 137–229). New York: Aspen Law and Business.Google Scholar
  22. Deatherage v. Board of Psychology, 134 Wn.2d 131, 948 P.2d 828 (Wn. Sup. Ct. 1997).Google Scholar
  23. Demare’ D., & Briere, J. (1996, August). Validation of the Trauma Symptom Inventory with Abused and Nonabused University Students. Paper presented at the 104th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association, Toronto, Canada.Google Scholar
  24. Edens, J. F., Otto, R. K., & Dwyer, T. J. (1998). Susceptibility of the Trauma Symptom Inventory to malingering. Journal of Personality Assessment, 71, 379–392.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Eisendrath, S. J., & McNiel, D. E. (2002). Factitious disorders in civil litigation: Twenty cases illustrating the spectrum of abnormal illness-affirming behavior. Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and Law, 30, 391–399.Google Scholar
  26. Elhai, J. D., Naifeh, J. A., Zucker, I. S., Gold, S. N., Deitsch, S. E., & Frueh, B. C. (2004). Discriminating malingered from genuine civilian Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: A validation of three MMPI-2 infrequency scales (F, FP, and FPTSD). Assessment 11, 139–144.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Estelle v. Smith, 451 U.S. 454, 101 S.Ct. 1866 (1981).Google Scholar
  28. Ewing, C. P. (2003). Expert testimony: Law and practice. In I. B. Weiner (Series Ed.) & A. M. Goldstein (Vol. Ed.), Handbook of psychology: Vol. 11, Forensic psychology (pp. 55–66). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.Google Scholar
  29. Faust, D., & Heard, K. V. (2003). Biased experts: Some practical suggestions for identifying and demonstrating unfair practices. In I. Z. Schulze & D. O. Brady (Eds.), Psychological injuries at trial (pp. 1706–1739). Chicago: American Bar Association.Google Scholar
  30. Fishbain, D. A., Cutler, R., Rosomoff, H. L., & Rosomoff, R. S. (2003). Chronic pain disability exaggeration/malingering and submaximal effort research. In I. Z. Schultz & D. O. Brady (Eds.), Psychological injuries at trial (pp. 1064–1122). Chicago: American Bar Association.Google Scholar
  31. Foa, E. B., Ehlers, A., Clark, D. M., Tolin, D. F., & Orsillo, S. M. (1999). The Posttraumatic Cognitions Inventory (PCTI): Development and validation. Psychological Assessment, 11, 303–314.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Frye v. United States, 293 F. 1013, 34 ALR 145 (D. C. Cir. 1923).Google Scholar
  33. Gatchel, R.J., & Kishing, N. (2006). Influence of personality characteristics of pain patients: Implications for causality in pain. In G. Young, A. W. Kane, & K. Nicholson (Eds.), Psychological knowledge in court: PTSD, pain and TBI. New York: Springer Science+Business Media.Google Scholar
  34. Gouvier, W. D., Hayes, J. S., & Smiroldo, B. B. (2003). The significance of base rates, test sensitivity, test specificity, and subjects’ knowledge of symptoms in assessing TBI sequelae and malingering. In I. Z. Schulze & D. O. Brady (Eds.), Psychological injuries at trial (pp. 641–671). Chicago: American Bar Association.Google Scholar
  35. Graham, J. R. (2006). MMPI-2: Assessing personality and psychopathology (4th ed.). NewYork: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  36. Greenberg, S. (2003). Personal injury examinations in torts for emotional distress. In I. B. Weiner (Series Ed.) & A. M. Goldstein (Vol. Ed.), Handbook of psychology: Vol. 11, Forensic psychology (pp. 233–258). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.Google Scholar
  37. Greenberg, S. A., Otto, R. K., & Long, A. C. (2003). The utility of psychological testing in assessing emotional damages in personal injury litigation. Assessment, 10, 411–419.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Greiffenstein, M. F. (2005). Quoted in Heilbronner, R. L. (Ed.), Forensic neuropsychology casebook (p. 349). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  39. Grisso, T. (1986). Evaluating competencies. New York: Kluwer/Plenum.Google Scholar
  40. Grisso, T. (2003). Evaluating competencies (2nd ed.). New York: Kluwer/Plenum.Google Scholar
  41. Grisso, T., & Appelbaum, P. S. (1998). Assessing competence to consent to treatment. NewYork: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  42. Grisso, T., & Vincent, G. M. (2005). The empirical limits of forensic mental health assessment. Law and Human Behavior, 29, 1–5.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Groth-Marnat, G. (2003). Handbook of psychological assessment. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.Google Scholar
  44. Gutheil, T. G., & Bursztajn, H. (2003). Avoiding ipse dixit mislabeling: Post-Daubert approaches to expert clinical opinions. Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, 31, 205–210.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  45. Heilbrun, K. (2001). Principles of forensic mental health assessment. New York: Kluwer/Plenum.Google Scholar
  46. Heilbrun, K., Marczyk, G. R., & DeMatteo, D. (2002). Forensic mental health assessment: A casebook. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  47. Heilbrun, K., Warren, J., & Picarello, K. (2003). Third party information in forensic assessment. In I. B. Weiner (Series Ed.) & A. M. Goldstein (Vol. Ed.), Handbook of psychology: Vol. 11, Forensic psychology (pp. 69–86). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.Google Scholar
  48. Hertenstein v. Kimberly Home Health Care, Inc. 189 F.R.D. 620 (Kan. 1999).Google Scholar
  49. Hess, A. (1998). Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory-III. In James C. Impara & Barbara S. Plake (Eds.), The thirteenth mental measurements yearbook (pp. 665–667). Lincoln: University of Nebraska-Lincoln.Google Scholar
  50. Hynan, D. J. (2004). Unsupported general differences on some personality disorder scales of the Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory-III. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 35, 105–110.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. In re: Air Crash at Tapei, Taiwan on October 31, 2000 (C.D. Cal. 2003).Google Scholar
  52. Iverson, G. L., & Lange, R. T. (2006). Detecting exaggeration and malingering in psychological injury claims. In W. J. Koch, K. S. Douglas, T. L. Nicholls, & M. L. O’Neill (Eds.), Psychological injuries: Forensic assessment, treatment, and law. (pp. 76–112). Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  53. Kane, A. W. (1999). Essentials of malingering assessment. In M. J. Ackerman (Ed.), Essentials of forensic psychological assessment (pp. 78–99). New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  54. Keane, T. M., Buckley, T. C., & Miller, M. W. (2003). Forensic psychological assessment in PTSD. In R. Simon (Ed.), Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in litigation (2nd ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.Google Scholar
  55. Kehrer, C. A., Sanchez, P. N., Habif, U., Rosenbaum, J. G., & Townes, B. D. (2000). Effects of a significant-other observer on neuropsychological test performance. The Clinical Neuropsychologist, 14, 67–71.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  56. Koch, W. J., O’Neill, M., & Douglas, K. S. (2005). Empirical limits for the forensic assessment of PTSD litigants. Law and Human Behavior, 29, 121–149.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Lally, S. J. (2003). What tests are acceptable for use in forensic evaluations? A survey of experts. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 34, 491–498.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Lees-Haley, P. R. (1992). Psychodiagnostic test usage by forensic psychologists. American Journal of Forensic Psychology, 10, 25–30.Google Scholar
  59. Lees-Haley, P. R. (2005). Quoted in Heilbronner, R. L. (Ed.), Forensic neuropsychology casebook. New York: Guilford Press, p. 359.Google Scholar
  60. Lees-Haley, P. R., English, L. T., & Glenn, W. J. (1991). A fake bad scale on the MMPI-2 for personal injury claimants. Psychological Reports, 68, 203–210.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Lees-Haley, P. R., Smith, H. H., Williams, C. W., & Dunn, J. T. (1995). Forensic neuropsychological test usage: An empirical survey. Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology, 11, 45–51.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Lezak, M. D., Howieson, D. B., & Loring, D. W. (2004). Neuropsychological assessment (4th ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  63. Macartney-Filgate, M. S., & Snow, G. W. (2004). The practitioner as expert witness. In D. R. Evans (Ed.), The law, standards, and ethics in the practice of psychology (2nd ed., pp. 287–309). Toronto: Edmond Montgomery.Google Scholar
  64. McLearen, A. M., Pietz, C. A., & Denney, R. L. (2004). Evaluation of psychological damages. In W. T. O’Donohue & E. R. Levensky (Eds.), Handbook of forensic psychology (pp. 267–299). Amsterdam: Elsevier.Google Scholar
  65. Melton, G. B., Petrila, J., Poythress, N. G., & Slobogin, C. (1997). Psychological evaluations for the courts (2nd ed.). New York: Guilford.Google Scholar
  66. Miller, W. (2003). Evidentiary issues in the psychological injury case. In I. Z. Schulze & D. O. Brady (Eds.), Psychological injuries at trial (pp. 202–235). Chicago: American Bar Association.Google Scholar
  67. Murphy, J. P. (2000). Expert witnesses at trial: Where are the ethics? Georgetown Journal of Legal Ethics, 14. Retrieved April 4, 2003 from www.law-forensics.com/ethic_and_experts.htmGoogle Scholar
  68. Nichols, D. S. (2001). Essentials of MMPI-2 assessment. New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  69. Nichols, D. S., & Greene, R. L. (1997). Dimensions of deception in personality assessment: The example of the MMPI-2. Journal of Personality Assessment, 68, 251–266.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Norris, F. N., & Hamblen, J. L. (2004). Standardized self-report measures of civilian trauma and PTSD. In J. P. Wilson & T. M. Keane (Eds.), Assessing psychological trauma and PTSD (2nd ed., pp. 63–102). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  71. O’Donnell, M. L., Creamer, M., Bryant, R. A., Schnyder, U., & Shalev, A. (2006). Posttraumatic disorders following injury: Assessment and other methodological considerations. In G. Young, A. W. Kane, & K. Nicholson (Eds.), Psychological knowledge in court: PTSD, pain and TBI. New York: Springer Science+Business Media.Google Scholar
  72. Otto, R. K. (2002). Use of the MMPI-2 in forensic settings. Journal of Forensic Psychology Practice, 2, 71–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. Polusny, M. A., & Arbisi, P. A. (2006). Assessment of psychological distress and disability after sexual assault in adults. In G. Young, A. W. Kane, & K. Nicholson (Eds.), Psychological knowledge in court: PTSD, pain and TBI. New York: Springer Science+Business Media.Google Scholar
  74. Pope, K. S., Butcher, J. N., & Seelen, J. (2000). The MMPI, MMPI-2 & MMPI-A in court (2nd ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.Google Scholar
  75. Pope, K. S., Butcher, J. N., & Seelen, J. (2006). The MMPI, MMPI-2 & MMPI-A in court (3rd ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.Google Scholar
  76. Posthuma, A., Podrouzek, W., & Crisp, D. (2002). The implications of Daubert on neuropsychological evidence in the assessment of remote mild traumatic brain injury. American Journal of Forensic Psychology, 20, 21–37.Google Scholar
  77. Rabin, L. A., Barr, W. B., & Burton, L. A. (2005). Assessment practices of clinical neuropsychologists in the United States and Canada: A survey of INS, NAN, and APA Division 40 members. Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology, 20, 33–65.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  78. Ragge v. MCA/Universal Studios, 165 F.R.D. 605 (C.D. Cal. 1995).Google Scholar
  79. Rogers, R. (1997). Structured interviews and dissimulation. In R. Rogers (Ed.), Clinical assessment of malingering and deception (2nd ed., pp. 301–327). New York: Guilford.Google Scholar
  80. Rogers, R. (2002). Validating retrospective assessments: An overview of research models. In R. Simon & D. W. Shuman (Eds.), Retrospective assessment of mental states in litigation: Predicting the past (pp. 287–306). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Publishing.Google Scholar
  81. Rogers, R. (2003). Forensic use and abuse of psychological tests: Multiscale inventories. Journal of Psychiatric Practice, 9, 316–320.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  82. Rogers, R., & Bender, S. D. (2003). Evaluation of malingering and deception. In I. B. Weiner (Series Ed.) & A. M. Goldstein (Vol. Ed.), Handbook of psychology: Vol. 11, Forensic psychology (pp. 109–129). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.Google Scholar
  83. Rogers, R., Salekin, R. T., & Sewell, K. W. (1999). Validation of the Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory for axis II disorders: Does it meet The Daubert standard? Law and Human Behavior, 23, 425–443.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  84. Rogers, R., Salekin, R. T., & Sewell, K. W. (2000). The MCMI-III and The Daubert standard: Separating rhetoric from reality. Law and Human Behavior, 24, 501–506.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  85. Rogers, R., Sewell, K.W., & Salekin, R.T. (1994). A meta-analysis of malingering on the MMPI-2. Assessment, 1, 227–237.Google Scholar
  86. Rogers, R., Sewell, K. W., Martin, M. A., & Vitacco, M. J. (2003). Detection of feigned mental disorders: A meta-analysis of the MMPI-2 and malingering. Assessment, 10, 160–177.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  87. Rogers, R., & Shuman, D. W. (2005). Fundamentals of forensic practice. New York: Springer Science+Business Media.Google Scholar
  88. Sageman, M. (2003). Three types of skills for effective forensic psychological assessments. Assessment, 10, 321–328.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  89. Samuel, S. E., DeGirolamo, J., Michaels, T. J., & O’Brien, J. (1995). Preliminary findings on the MMPI “Cannot Say” responses with personal injury litigants. American Journal of Forensic Psychiatry, 16, 59–72.Google Scholar
  90. Schutte, James W. (2000). Using the MCMI-III in forensic evaluations. American Journal of Forensic Psychology, 19, 5–20.Google Scholar
  91. Sherman, J. J., & Ohrbach, R. (2006). Objective and subjective measurement of pain: Current approaches for forensic applications. In G. Young, A. W. Kane, & K. Nicholson (Eds.), Psychological knowledge in court: PTSD, pain and TBI. New York: Springer Science+Business Media.Google Scholar
  92. Shirsat v. Mutual Pharmaceuticals Co., 169 F.R.D. 68 (E.D. Pa. 1996).Google Scholar
  93. Shuman, D. W. (1994, 2002 supplement). Psychiatric and psychological evidence (2nd ed.). Deerfield, IL: Clark, Boardman, Callaghan.Google Scholar
  94. Shuman, D. W. (2002). Retrospective assessment of mental states and the law. In R. I. Simon & D. W. Shuman (Eds.), Retrospective assessment of mental states in litigation (pp. 21–45). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric.Google Scholar
  95. Tombaugh, T. N. (1996). TOMM: The Test of Memory Malingering. North Tonawanda, New York: MultiHealth Systems.Google Scholar
  96. Tomlin v. Holocek, 150 F.R.D. 628 (D. Minn. 1993).Google Scholar
  97. Walker, L. E. A., & Shapiro, D. L. (2003). Introduction to forensic psychology. New York: Kluwer/Plenum.Google Scholar
  98. Watkins, C. E., Campbell, V. L., Nieberding, R., & Hallmark, R. (1995). Contemporary practice of psychological assessment by clinical psychologists. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 26, 54–60.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  99. Weathers, F. W., Keane, T. M., & Davidson, J. R. T. (2001). Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale: A review of the first ten years of research. Depression and Anxiety, 13, 132–156.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  100. Weiner, I. B. (2002). Psychodiagnostic testing in forensic psychology: A commentary. Journal of Forensic Psychology Practice, 2, 113–119.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  101. Weiss, D. S., & Ozer, E. J. (2006). Predicting who will develop Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. In G. Young, A. W. Kane, & K. Nicholson (Eds.), Psychological knowledge in court: PTSD, pain and TBI (pp. 85–96). New York: Springer Science+Business Media.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  102. Wilson, J. P., & Moran, T. A. (2004). Forensic/clinical assessment of psychological trauma and PTSD in legal settings. In J. P. Wilson, & T. M. Keane (Eds.), Assessing psychological trauma and PTSD (2nd ed., pp. 603–636). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  103. Zinermon v. Burch, 494 U.S. 113, 110 S.Ct. 975 (1990).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andrew W. Kane
    • 1
  1. 1.Milwaukee

Personalised recommendations