Forensic Psychiatry - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780128028520, 9780128028865

Forensic Psychiatry

1st Edition

A Lawyer’s Guide

Authors: Vivian Shnaidman
eBook ISBN: 9780128028865
Hardcover ISBN: 9780128028520
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 18th January 2016
Page Count: 214
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Lawyers frequently encounter clients and/or cases of bizarre behavior, mental illness, substance abuse, psychopathy, sexual offenses, learning disorders, birth defects, and other behavioral and emotional issues. Often they are ill-prepared to understand the nature of the psychiatric report, how the psychiatric assessment was structured, and how to best utilize and challenge these reports in court.
Forensic Psychiatry: A Lawyer’s Guide provides legal professionals the tools to identify mentally ill clients and help them navigate through the psychiatric information and language in reports and testimony. Topics include why a forensic psychiatrist is necessary, applications of psychiatry to law, various psychiatric disorders, and utilizing the expert witness.

Key Features

  • A user-friendly roadmap to psychiatry for the non-psychiatrist—covers why you need a forensic psychiatrist and the applications of psychiatry to law
  • Provides coverage of the mental status examination, common psychiatric diagnoses, treatable disorders versus brain damage, medical problems masquerading as mental illness, and much more
  • Includes a full glossary of psychiatric terms as an additional easy reference guide


Lawyers, judges, psychiatrists and medical professionals w/o forensic training who are expert witnesses, law students and instructors

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Why you need a forensic psychiatrist
Chapter 2: What is psychiatry?
Chapter 3: Applications of psychiatry to law
Chapter 4: The Mental Status Examination
Chapter 5: Common psychiatric diagnoses
Chapter 6: Bad vs. Mad
Chapter 7: Critical concept in competency
Chapter 8: Treatable disorders vs brain damage
Chapter 9: Medical problems
Chapter 10: Hearing voices
Chapter 11: Your Expert Witness
Chapter 12: Summary and conclusions
Glossary of Terms


No. of pages:
© Academic Press 2016
Academic Press
eBook ISBN:
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About the Author

Vivian Shnaidman

Vivian Chern Shnaidman’s interest in forensic psychiatry started long before she even knew what forensic psychiatry was. While majoring in Psychology at Bryn Mawr College, she told a friend that she planned to be “the psychiatrist who goes to court and tells everyone what is really happening in the case.” She went on to study medicine at Tel Aviv University, and then returned to the US to train in psychiatry at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and SUNY Buffalo. She completed a forensic psychiatry fellowship at New York University, and subsequently began practicing forensic psychiatry almost full time. She has worked in a variety of forensic settings, including jails, hospitals for the criminally insane, prisons, and a facility for civilly committed sexually violent predators. She currently maintains a private treatment practice as well as a private forensic practice, currently specializing primarily in civil matters, such as child custody case, domestic abuse, termination of parental rights, testamentary capacity, and a multitude of odd cases that defy description here. Dr. Shnaidman has presented widely on a variety of topics in forensic psychiatry and general psychiatry, including her theory of abusive mothers, psychopathic mothers, immigration evaluations, sex offenders, and other topics. She is a member of several professional associations and is particularly active in the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, which she especially likes because of its interdisciplinary nature. Dr. Shnaidman greatly enjoys travel, and is also a writer of fiction, a long-time married mother of three, and has been known to cook, knit, crochet, and sew during her abundant spare time.

Affiliations and Expertise

Jersey Forensic Consulting, LLC and Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, USA

Ratings and Reviews