Goals and Objectives: Clinical Forensic Experience

The clinical forensic experience is, of necessity, a part-time experience.  At a minimum, the resident should write at least one in-depth medicolegal evaluation in which the relevant legal question is addressed, using medical records, psychological testing and the clinical interview as appropriate to substantiate the opinions offered.  In addition, to the extent possible, the resident is encouraged to witness medicolegal testimony at deposition and/or trial.

 Patient Care

The resident should develop the skills to

  • evaluate individuals treated on other services for issues of decisional capacity.
  • prepare relevant legal documents for purposes of involuntary admission and treatment.

 Medical Knowledge

The resident should

  • Acquire the knowledge base and skills to appropriately evaluate individuals subject to involuntary commitment and/or involuntary treatment.
  • Be able to relate clinical information (e.g., medical records, psychological testing, clinical interview) to a specific question in the legal context (e.g. competency to stand trial, suitability for conditional release following a successful insanity plea, psychological damages in civil cases, etc.)
  • Be able to explicate the differences in purpose and organization between a clinical and a medicolegal evaluation, including the different ethical responsibilities entailed.