Forensic Services

A FORENSIC SERVICES DIVISION WITH OVER 12 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE:

We have done 100s of forensic evaluations over the past decade, and provided therapy for a variety of forensically involved clients. Our doctors have testified as expert witnesses in numerous cases to include family court, civil cases, and criminal cases.

TRUSTED SENIOR LEADERSHIP – SKILLED FORENSIC  EVALUATORS: As a group practice with several clinicians experienced in forensic evaluations and forensic therapy cases, our evaluators and therapists have a broad range of knowledge and experience they bring to our team. Dr. Lepage began working in forensics over 15 years ago and is well known for her ability to decipher clinically complex cases. With her high standards for quality of reports and timely completion, she leads her forensic evaluation team to produce the highest quality work.

CLICK TO JUMP TO:

 Overview of Forensic Services
 Forensic Expertise Bios
 Forensic Evaluations
Custody Evaluations
 Family Court Matters
 Criminal Court Matters
 Civil Court Matters
 Disability Determinations
 Deposition & Testimony
 What is Forensic Psychology?
 Forensic Articles
 Archived Forensic Newsletters


OVERVIEW OF FORENSIC SERVICES
DOMESTIC/FAMILY
CRIMINAL
CIVIL
ADULT/TEEN/CHILD
CRIMINAL FORENSIC EVALUATIONS
– ADULT & JUVENILE
CIVIL FORENSIC EVALUATIONS
– ADULT & JUVENILE
Psychological Evaluation/
Risk Assessment
Substance Abuse Evaluation/
Risk Assessment
Sentencing/Dispositional Assessment
Suicide Risk Assessment
Child Abuser Evaluations
Competency to Stand Trial Evaluations
Mitigation/Diminished Capacity
Juvenile Competence/Miranda Waiver
Juvenile Waiver Hearing
(Transfer to Adult Court)
Reliability of Child Witness
Assessment of Mitigating Factors
Death Penalty Evaluations
Personal Injury Evaluations
Disability Determination
Impact of Trauma Assessments
Independent Medical Examinations
(Second Opinion Evaluations)
Psychological Factors in Harassment,
Sexual Harassment, and Discrimination
Worker’s Compensation
Competency to Execute Will / Power of
Attorney: Financial Competency
Competency Regarding Guardianship
of Incapacitated Individual
Civil Competency/Capacity Evaluations
Psychological & Substance Abuse Evals
Fitness for Duty/Return to Work
Adoption Readiness Evaluations
Immigration Evaluations
FAMILY COURT
EVALUATIONS & MEDIATION
THERAPY SERVICES
FOR ALL AGES
Custody Evaluations
Visitation Evaluations &
Visitation Risk Assessments
Parental Competency Evaluations
Effect of Parenting on Child
Functioning Evaluations
Legal Guardianship Evaluations
Grandparent Visitation Assessments
Child Abuse Evaluations
Termination of Parental Rights
Adoption Readiness Evaluations
Mediation of Parental Conflicts
Divorce Mediation & Parenting Plan
Mediation (The Center for Separating
with Civility & Divorcing with Dignity®)
Mediation/Coaching for
Cooperative Co-Parenting
Mediation/Coaching for
Parallel Parenting
Parent Coordinator services
Development of Family
Reunification Plans
For defendants, offenders,
plaintiffs, and victims
Post-trauma, depression, anxiety,
phobias, and all other psychological
and family issues
Crisis and supportive
counseling for victims
Anger Management
Court-Ordered Treatment
Diversion: Juvenile Delinquency
& Adult Jail
Substance Abuse Treatment
Family Therapy
Parenting Skills: Parent
Education & Coaching
Therapeutic Supervised Visitation
Therapy for adults, teens,
and children
Unique setting; for those who need a
different approach we have walking
trails,   outdoor therapy space, pool
table, media   room, and games

CONSULTATION SERVICES 
For Lawyers, Probation/Parole Officers, and Correctional/Police Officers on Mental Health issues; for Mental Health Practitioners on the Criminal Justice System, Civil Court, Family Court, and Testimony.

DESCRIPTIONS OF FORENSIC EVALUATIONS

 Full Psychological Evaluation: Includes cognitive, emotional and personality testing, and provides in-depth information on an individual’s functioning in all three of these areas. Useful to help understand what a person is thinking and feeling, their underlying personality structure, intellectual strengths and limitations, coping skills or areas of weakness in coping, and why a person behaves as he or she does. In clinically complex cases and/or cases in which it is hard for a person to get in touch with or articulate what the problem is he or she is experiencing, a full psychological evaluation can be an invaluable resource for providing diagnostic clarification and treatment recommendations.

Abbreviated Psychological Evaluation: Includes emotional and personality testing, and provides in-depth information on an individual’s functioning in both of these areas. Useful to understand what a person is thinking and feeling, their underlying personality structure, coping skills or areas of weakness in coping, and why a person behaves as he or she does. If previous cognitive testing exists or it seems cognitive limitations do not bear on the case, an abbreviated psychological evaluation can be an invaluable resource for providing diagnostic clarification and treatment recommendations.

Full Battery: Combined Full Psychological (described above) plus Full Psychoeducational (which rules-out AD/HD and LD). The most comprehensive testing battery available, to determine in-depth all cognitive, educational, emotional and personality factors affecting a person.

Civil Evaluations: In general civil evaluations are typically some format of an abbreviated psychological, full psychological, or full battery depending on the case and what the needs are for amount and type of cognitive testing, emotional and personality testing, collateral contacts, review of collateral data, etc. As a full-service testing facility committed to excellence in evaluation, we own a large variety of test instruments and add to it regularly. Thus our evaluation in your case is truly customized and will yield the most specific and useful information and results.

MMPI-2 only: The most widely used and widely researched test of adult psychopathology. A self-report measure used to screen for clinical and psychosocial disorders. Questions on the MMPI-2 are designed to evaluate the thoughts, emotions, attitudes, and behavioral traits that comprise personality. The results of the test reflect an individual’s personality strengths and weaknesses, and can identify certain disturbances of personality (that is, psychopathologies).

Adoption Readiness: Includes a clinical interview covering information of childhood, employment, mental health history and current functioning, substance abuse history, legal history, and understanding of adoption. Administration of the MMPI-2-RF which is the most widely used and widely researched test of adult psychopathology. The MMPI-2-RF is a self-report measure used to screen for clinical and psychosocial disorders. Questions on the MMPI-2-RF are designed to evaluate the thoughts, emotions, attitudes, and behavioral traits that comprise personality, and results reflect an individual’s personality strengths and weaknesses and can identify certain disturbances of personality (that is, psychopathologies). This includes a report and feedback session.

Immigration: Depending on the question being asked, the procedures will vary. A clinical interview will always occur. Psychological testing, record review, and collateral calls may be required.

Risk Assessment (RA): Full or abbreviated psychological evaluation or full battery, plus collateral contacts and records review, with analysis of level of risk for future behaviors and focus of recommendations on suggestions for reducing risk of continued delinquent or criminal behavior (to include domestic violence, child abuse, violent and non-violent criminal behavior, etc.)

Parental Capacity Evaluation: Includes diagnostic interview with parent and child(ren), psychological testing of parent, parent-child observation, and collateral contacts and records review. Results provide in-depth information on parent’s psychological functioning and parenting abilities and functioning.

Custody Evaluation: Includes diagnostic interviews with parents, child(ren), and any step parents; psychological testing of parents and children as needed; parent-child observations of all parent-child dyads; and collateral contacts and records review. Results provide in-depth information on child’s developmental stage, psychological functioning and needs, and on parents’ psychological functioning and parenting abilities and functioning. Our Custody Evaluations page has in-depth information.

Effect of Parenting on Child Functioning Evaluation: This is an evaluation of the child in a family unit where there are concerns that one or both parents are negatively impacting the child’s functioning. This may involve concerns about the child’s behavior such as aggression, misbehaving, etc., or concerns about parental alienation. There may also be concerns that the parent’s behavior is impacting the development or maintenance of a mental health (depression, anxiety), eating, or substance abuse disorder. The evaluation includes a clinical interview and psychological testing with the child, clinical interview with the parents, observations with the child and each parent, and necessary collateral contacts.

Competency to Stand Trial Evaluation/Waive Miranda Rights: Includes an in-depth clinical/competency interview to determine if the accused is competent to stand trial/waive Miranda rights, and records review or collateral contacts as necessary. To be used in court to assist judge with decisions regarding competency. (IQ testing and/or additional mental health testing can be added if needed.)

Malingering Evaluation: Includes an in-depth clinical interview, testing specifically designed to detect malingering, and records review or collateral contacts as necessary to determine if the accused is likely malingering. Can focus on questions of mental health malingering, cognitive malingering, or both.

Mitigation/Diminished Capacity: Mental state/functioning at the time of the offense. Includes an in-depth clinical interview to determine the mental capacity of the accused, and records review or collateral contacts as necessary. (IQ testing and/or additional mental health testing can be added if needed.)

Juvenile Substance Abuse Evaluation: Clinical interview, SCID, and parent interview to determine or rule out any substance-related diagnosis, risk for future use, and treatment recommendations as needed. (Can add records review if needed.) Gives clarity about whether substances are part of the child’s difficulties, and recommendations for level of treatment necessary to address any substance abuse. Results in verbal recommendations as well as any letter of results needed for court.

Adult Substance Abuse Evaluation: Clinical interview and SCID to determine or rule out any substance-related diagnosis, risk for future use, and treatment recommendations as needed. (Can add records review if needed.) Results in verbal recommendations as well as any letter of results needed for court.

Forensic Substance Abuse Evaluation: Clinical interview, PDSQ, and SASSI to determine or rule out any substance-related diagnosis, risk for future use and treatment recommendations as needed. Record review, and/or treatment provider consultation. Results in a letter or report of results as needed for court.

OTHER CIVIL, CRIMINAL, OR FAMILY COURT EVALUATIONS Please call to inquire.

Forensic Evaluation Fees: Please note our fees are very reasonable when compared with others in the field.

. Expanded Psychological Evaluation: $1,995.00
. Psychological Evaluation: $1,495.00
. Full Battery: $2,550.00
. Risk Assessment expanded psych: $2,250.00
. Risk Assessment psych: $1,675.00
. Risk Assessment full battery: $2,950.00
. MMPI-2 only: $250.00 (face-to-face feedback session if needed $80.00)
. Parental Capacity: $3,000.00
. Effect of Parenting on Child Functioning Evaluation: $3,750.00
. Custody Evaluation: $5,750.00 flat fee for a family of up to four ($500 each additional person)
. Custody Evaluation w/ Testing Battery: $7,750.00 flat fee for a family of up to four ($750 each additional person)
. Competency to Stand Trial, Mitigation/Diminished Capacity: to $1,495.00-$2,250.00
. Malingering Eval (mental health): $1,495.00
. Malingering Eval (cognitive): $1,995.00
. Juvenile Substance Abuse Evaluation (brief): $475.00
. Substance Abuse Evaluation: $1,495.00
. Forensic Substance Abuse Evaluation: $475.00-$600.00
. Immigration: $200.00 per hour
. Adoption Readiness: $825.00 for a couple or $495.00 for an individual, due in full at the evaluation session. If more testing is required, the cost is $165.00 per hour.

Most of our evaluations are packaged as cost-saving flat fees as described above; if hourly, forensic testing is $200.00 per hour.


FAMILY COURT MATTERS

FOR SEPARATING & DIVORCING COUPLES

 The Center for Separating with Civility & Divorcing with Dignity® (Click here for information on our unique divorce services center; the only Center in the
Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area. Page contains a wealth of information regarding
all facets of divorce: choosing the right process for you and your family; child issues;    financial issues.)

 Custody & Visitation Evaluations
Click here for in-depth information on custody evaluations

FOR JUVENILE DELINQUENCY

 Individual & Family Therapy
 Psychological Evaluations
To assist with diagnostic clarification & treatment recommendations
 Risk Assessments
 Substance Abuse Evaluations
 Competency to Stand Trial Evaluations


CRIMINAL COURT MATTERS

FOR DEFENDANTS & OFFENDERS

 Psychological Evaluations
 Risk Assessments
 Substance Abuse Evaluations
 Competency to Stand Trial evaluations
 Therapy
 Anger Management
 Out-patient therapy for substance abuse

FOR PLAINTIFFS/VICTIMS

 Psychological evaluations (to establish harm to psychological functioning, such as might be caused by stress and result in depression, anxiety, post-trauma symptoms, inability to work or otherwise function in daily life, etc)
 Therapy


CIVIL COURT MATTERS

FOR DEFENDANTS

 Psychological evaluations
 Risk Assessments
 Substance Abuse evaluations
 Therapy
 Anger Management
 Out-patient therapy for substance abuse

FOR PLAINTIFFS

 Psychological evaluations (to establish harm to psychological functioning, such as might be    caused by stress and result in depression, anxiety, post-trauma symptoms, inability to    work or otherwise function in daily life, etc)
 Therapy


DISABILITY DETERMINATIONS FOR CLAIMANTS

 For initial claimant hearings regarding entitlement to disability insurance benefits.
 For reconsideration determinations for entitlement to benefits.
 We offer written evaluations/opinions as well as expert testimony as needed.


DEPOSITIONS AND TESTIMONY

We are happy to provide testimony should you and your attorney determine it would be helpful to your case. However, your attorney must subpoena us if you want us to be deposed or provide testimony; we will not appear without subpoena. Depositions and/or testimony as fact witness or as expert witness are billed at $350.00 per hour time spent preparing for and giving deposition and/or testimony, port to port. If you are receiving a court-ordered evaluation, depositions and testimony may be part of the services we are asked to provide as part of the evaluation; however, these are not covered under the flat fee of the evaluation. We will require a retainer up-front based on an estimate of time that we will provide, and we will not appear at deposition or in court without pre-payment of said retainer. If we over-estimate time needed any remaining retainer will be promptly returned within 48 business hours of deposition or testimony completion. To assure we are available for you, we require ten business days notice to appear at deposition or in court, to allow us time to clear our schedules, with the retainer due in full five business days in advance of appearance. We are happy to speak with your attorney to help determine if our testimony would be useful in your case.

WHAT IS FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGY?

Almost every area of psychology is relevant to some aspect of the law. For example, developmentalpsychology affects the study of the effects of divorce on children. Socialpsychology affects the influence of group think on terrorism laws. Clinical psychology influences the prediction of dangerousness in the mentally ill. Cognitive psychology influences the study of the reliability of memory in eyewitness testimony. Psychology and the law have a long history dating back to the early 1900’s. However, the goals of the criminal justice system and psychology are fairly divergent.
The goal of psychology is to provide a full and accurate explanation of human behavior while the goal of the criminal justice system or law is to regulate human behavior. Criminal justice depends on precedents while psychology believes our current understanding of human behavior should be revised in light of new data. Lawyers advocate for a particular view; psychologists remain objective and focus on what the data show. Given these differing objectives, one might wonder whypsychology and the criminal justice system should merge.These two disciplines overlapsimply because the criminal justice system shapes people and there are many inescapably psychological issues in the legal system. Such issues are generally studied by those who practice forensic psychology. Forensic psychology includes research that examines aspects of human behavior directly related to legal processes. It is the professional practice of psychology within or in consultation with a legal system that encompasses family, criminal, and civil law. Most forensic psychologists are clinical psychologists who receive continuing education and training in forensic psychology. Forensic psychologists also may be asked to testify as experts on a variety of topics such as mental health diagnosis, treatment efficacy, and the impact of trauma on an individual.