Remote Forensic Psychological Assessment in Civil Cases: Considerations for Experts Assessing Harms from Early Life Abuse.

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Date: June 2021
From: Psychological Injury and Law(Vol. 14, Issue 2)
Publisher: Springer
Document Type: Report; Brief article
Length: 251 words

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Abstract :

Keywords: Admissibility; Civil litigation; COVID-19; Expert assessment; Childhood abuse; Psychological injury; PTSD; Remote psychological assessment; Videoconferencing Abstract The COVID-19 pandemic has brought to the fore the question of whether psycho-legal assessments can be executed remotely in a manner that adheres to the rigorous standards applied during in-person assessments. General guidelines have evolved, but to date, there are no explicit directives about whether and how to proceed. This paper reviews professional, ethical, and legal challenges that experts should consider before conducting such an evaluation remotely. Although the discussion is more widely applicable, remote forensic psychological assessment of adults alleging childhood abuse is used as an example throughout, due to the complexity of these cases, the ethical dilemmas they can present, and the need to carefully assess non-verbal trauma-related symptoms. The use of videoconferencing technology is considered in terms of potential benefits of this medium, as well as challenges this method could pose to aspects of interviewing and psychometric testing. The global pandemic is also considered with respect to its effects on functioning and mental health and the confounding impact such a crisis has on assessing the relationship between childhood abuse and current psychological functioning. Finally, for those evaluators who want to engage in remote assessment, practice considerations are discussed. Author Affiliation: (1) Department of Applied Psychology and Human Behaviour, Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto, 252 Bloor Street West, M5S1V6, Toronto, ON, Canada (a) J.goldenson@utoronto.ca Article History: Registration Date: 02/22/2021 Received Date: 07/03/2020 Accepted Date: 02/21/2021 Online Date: 03/13/2021 Byline:

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A664837468