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What is a Forensic Psychiatrist?

The word, forensic, indicates the application of science to the legal system.  A forensic psychiatrist is a trained medical doctor specializing in Psychiatry who applies the science and art of Psychiatry to issues in the legal system.  The American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law (AAPL), the leading forensic psychiatric organization, defines Forensic Psychiatry as “a subspecialty of Psychiatry in which scientific and clinical expertise is required in legal contexts involving civil, criminal, correctional, regulatory, or legislative matters, and in specialized clinical consultations and areas such as risk assessment or employment.”  “Psychiatrists in a forensic role are called upon to practice in a manner that balances competing duties to the individual and society.  In doing so, he/she should be bound by underlying ethical principles of respect for persons, honesty, justice, and social responsibility.”  Reference, AAPL Ethical Guidelines for the Practice of Forensic Psychiatry.  The role of the forensic psychiatrist is to assist the trier of fact, judges and/or juries in understanding the mental and behavioral issues, diagnoses or processes, involved in the particular case.  They must communicate these facts in a clear and easily understandable manner avoiding as much as possible the use of psychiatric jargon.


Additional services we offer include:

  • Litigation consultation
  • Disability determination
  • Americans with Disabilities-related litigation
  • Capacity
  • Title VII
  • Suicide
  • PTSD
  • Fitness for duty
  • Personal injury
  • Selected criminal cases

For additional information on our forensic psychiatry, independent medical examiner and medical malpractice services in the Memphis, TN area, visit our Contact Us page or call (901) 312-1660.