Articles by Expert Witnesses
Alcohol-induced blackout is a topic that comes up often in the criminal justice system. It’s not unusual for defendants to have no memory of their behaviors while they were under the influence of alcohol. A common question that arises is “How could have a defendant committed a crime but have no recollection of their actions?” While it’s entirely possible for the defendant to lie about what they do or don’t remember, it’s also possible that they genuinely can’t remember what they did. The goal of this article is to discuss how alcohol can impact memory and explain why a defendant can’t recall events while they were under the influence of alcohol due to an alcohol-induced blackout.
Retirement plan sponsors are coming under increased litigation risk as the number of "excessive fee" cases spreads to smaller funds.
As coronavirus-related workforce reductions increase, employers should be mindful of their reporting obligations to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).
Provided by: Abed Awad, Esq.
As America marks the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment that guaranteed women the right to vote– in practice it was primarily reserved for white women, we reflect on gender-equitable principles essential to freedom and democracy.
“Courts sometimes make standing law more complicated than it needs to be,” writes Associate Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh in the Supreme Court’s June 1, 2020 decision on Thole et. al. v. U.S. Bank N.A. et. al.
As employers struggle with the financial implications of the COVID-19 pandemic, many are looking into the possibility of suspending contributions to employee retirement plans that they manage. At the same time, employees who are struggling to make ends meet may be looking into making withdrawals or taking loans from their retirement accounts.
Provided by: John D. Lloyd, PhD, CPE
Motorcycle accident victims worldwide account for more than 340,000 fatalities annually, with the Unites States ranking 8th highest in number of motorcycle accident deaths, largely due to non-mandatory motorcycle helmet requirements for adults in a number of States. Seventy-five percent of all fatal motorcycle accidents involve head and brain injury, with rotational forces acting on the brain the primary cause of mortality. Current motorcycle helmets are reasonably effective at reducing head injuries associated with blunt impact. However, the mechanism of traumatic brain injury is biomechanically very different from that associated with focal head injury. This study was conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of current motorcycle helmets at reducing the risk of traumatic brain injuries.
Immigration has become a hot button topic in the United States over the past several years. There are more and more people every year applying for various waivers and petitions in order to stay in the United States and build a better life for themselves and their families. There are dozens of different waivers and petitions that you can apply for. This whole process can be very confusing, overwhelming, and intimidating. We are not attorneys so we can’t go over all the different waivers and petitions in this article. We recommend you consult with an immigration attorney so they can represent you and help you through this process. For some waivers or petitions, your attorney might request a psychological evaluation in order to help build a stronger case.
Fitness for Duty Evaluations have become more common for public safety positions. Courts throughout the United States have ruled that due to the level of trust and power given to law enforcement officers, law enforcement agencies have a responsibility to ensure that officers are fit to perform their duties. When an employer has a reasonable belief that an employee has a psychological condition that impairs their ability to perform essential job functions or poses a direct safety threat, they can require the employee to undergo a fitness for duty evaluation.
Violence risk assessments are becoming more common in the criminal justice system. Forensic psychologists are conducting these evaluations on behalf of the court, defense attorneys, and probation and parole departments. Violence risk assessments are used in a variety of situations in criminal cases including pre-trial proceedings, mitigation, sentencing, and determining suitability for parole and probation. Despite the fact that violence risk assessments are more prevalent, there is still confusion regarding what a violence risk assessment is, how it can and should be used, and the benefits and limitations associated with a violence risk assessment.
Provided by: Easy Credit Relief Inc.
Doug Minor, Is a Credit Scoring, Credit Reporting, Personal Finance and Mortgage Expert. He has served as a FCRA Credit Reporting, Credit Scoring, Mortgage and Damages expert witness in over 125 cases in both Federal and State Courts across the U.S.
Provided by: Collision Reconstruction Consulting LLC
Accident reconstruction experts often determine the impact severity of a vehicular collision in their forensic investigations. A common collision severity index is Delta-v, or change in velocity of an object during a collision event. Airbag deployment thresholds can be a useful metric of collision severity in accident reconstruction applications. The National Automotive Sampling System (NASS) has provided a publicly-available database of real world motor vehicle collisions, including event data recorder (EDR) reports retrieved from airbag control modules. These reports typically indicate the airbag deployment status and the corresponding Delta-V of each recorded event.
Provided by: Collision Reconstruction Consulting LLC
Accident reconstruction experts are retained to determine what happened in pedestrian collisions by analyzing the physical evidence. Understanding the relative positions between a vehicle and a pedestrian leading up to a collision can help parties determine liability. Experts take into account factors such as the vehicle shape, braking activity, geometry of pedestrian, impact configuration.
The Random House Dictionary of the English Language defines residual as that which remains. This is not an article about the 300 million people worldwide who are not in workplaces or classrooms because of COVID-19. This is not an article about locked down cities, overwhelmed medical facilities, stock market declines, travel plans in tatters or cancelled conferences, sporting events, and concerts. This is an article that will attempt to calculate what the worldwide economic and higher education landscape will look like after the threat of COVID-19 has dissipated; what remains.
“Dates of destiny are always on time.” - Anonymous “I hate quotations. Tell me what you know.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson
“The great thing in this world is not so much where you stand, as in what direction you are moving.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes
Provided by: Dr. Richard J. Stride, Psy.D., MBA, LPC, LMHC
I am consistently amazed by the resiliency of the human spirit I see in our County. As Americans, we all have a bit of that “Pioneering Spirit” that moved our for bearers to forge new pathways into the unknown. That resilient pioneering spirit is alive
Provided by: Blue Silk Consulting
To find guidance, we talked with Rosemary Coates, the Executive Director of the California-based Reshoring Institute, a non-profit that provides information, research, and support for companies trying to reshore their manufacturing and services back into the United States. (Full disclosure, Rosemary is also co-author of the supply chain treatise, Legal Blacksmith: How to Avoid and Defend Supply Chain Disputes, with SPB partner Sarah Rathke. She is also an expert witness and the President of Blue Silk Consulting.)
Provided by HG.org
Lost profit cases typically involve a wrongdoer, the defendant, who caused economic damage to a wronged party, the plaintiff. To recover what was lost by the defendant’s wrongful action, the plaintiff must prove in a court of law that they suffered general damages, including lost profits. They must show the defendant caused a specific or estimated loss that is reasonably certain, not a guess. Lost profit calculations are necessary to prove damages in breach of contract actions that require plaintiffs to prove damages that the parties could have foreseen at the time they made their agreement.
The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) released updated rules amending its administrative review regulations. The new rules only apply to plans covered by PBGC’s single-employer plan termination program. These updated rule amends PBGC’s regulations on rules of administrative review of agency decisions to clarify, simplify, and make other editorial changes to the language, as well as to codify PBGC practices.
Provided by: Easy Credit Relief Inc.
The financial impact to someone’s credit profile after it has been harmed.
This article explains the hush-hush losses among statistical arbitragers. Statarbers are exposed to factors, which have been dispersing recently, and so should the statarbers. The likely soluton is that large redemptions are taking place, starting by the quant-equity managers, the risk-parity programs and the highly leveraged large multi-strategy hedge funds.
Recent market moves are extreme, but such events are far from rare. Actually, they are quite frequent. Nevertheless investors (from modest to institutional) sell insurances against market crashes, and repeatedly lose institutional amount of money. Malachite Capital, a $600m NY hedge fund, has been selling tail risk in various forms in extremely large quantities. They just announced that they are in default. Problem, their positions are so large, that they might take several broker-dealers with them.
The market events of the last week have been drastic, not only in movements, but also in volatility surface deformation. Bridgewater's purchase of 1,000,000 lot of options as a hedge is probably a cause of the current volatility
Provided by: Benjamin Institute
Thanks to the women of the #MeToo movement, who have courageously exposed rampant sexual harassment and assault, our society is being forced to confront this upsetting reality and change it for future generations. The massage treatment room is a microcosm of the greater society, so we sadly find the same types of issues there. Much like in the greater community, more attention needs to be paid to this phenomenon in the field of massage.
The “Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act” (SECURE) was signed into law on December 20, 2019. The new law represents the most significant changes to 401(k), IRA and other retirement plans in more than a decade.
Provided by HG.org
Outside persons can help lawyers win their cases. One example of such assistance for lawyers is the use of California construction expert witnesses to achieve success in construction law cases in California.
Provided by HG.org
It is often mistakenly assumed that forensic psychiatry expert witnesses only assist lawyers in criminal litigation cases. In fact, they can help lawyers in many other types of litigation.
Provided by HG.org
While forensic psychiatry expert witnesses can assist lawyers in criminal and other litigation cases. they can also help lawyers in non-litigation matters. Lawyers can use forensic psychiatrists to add certainty and minimize risk in non-litigation matters.
Provided by HG.org
Lawyers often rely on third parties to help them succeed in their cases. One person who lawyers can use to assist them in prevailing in their cases is the forensic psychiatry expert witness.
The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation’s (PBGC) Fiscal Year 2019 Annual Report was released in November, 2019. The Report showed that from FY 2018 to FY 2019 the Multiemployer Insurance Program’s deficit went up $11.3 billion (FY 2018- $53.9 billion; FY 2019- $65.2 billion), while the Single-Employer Program saw a positive net position of $8.7 billion.
Provided by: Sidney P. Blum, CPA CFE, CPEA, CFF
Businesses that include proper contract language instructing a licensee how to calculate a royalty, the specific documents to retain and that have a proactive licensee monitoring program are best positioned to achieve higher royalty revenues at reduced monitoring costs without damaging business relationships.
This article provides a conceptual framework for understanding legal capacity and describes the components and legal basis of a psychological assessment of testamentary capacity, contractual capacity, undue influence, and the capacity to make medical decisions. It may serve as a reference for attorneys to identify the key aspects of an effective capacity evaluation, and to prepare for cross-examination of opposing experts.
This article reviews best practices for conducting psychological personal injury evaluations in civil proceedings. It may be useful for attorneys to review in order to understand the components of an effective personal injury evaluation and to prepare for the cross-examination of opposing psychological experts.
Youthful Offender Psychological Mitigation Evaluations for Franklin Hearings and Other High Stakes Proceedings
This article reviews the legal basis, research foundations, and a potential evaluation structure of youthful offender mitigation evaluations in California.
Provided by: ForensicExpertPro
How much is this going to cost my client (says the fee paid attorney)? How much is this going to cost me (says the attorney on contingency)? "How much should I charge? (says the Forensic Psychiatrist or Psychologist)? These are the most common questions I hear, so I'm taking it to the mat.
Pension plan sponsors in the U.S. continued to pursue a strategy known as “pension risk transfer” in 2019. According to the Secure Retirement Institute (formerly LIMRA SRI), 2019 year-to-date pension buy-out sales totaled $16.7 billion through the third quarter, which is a 4% increase over 2018.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is one of the most common psychological conditions that’s reported by plaintiffs in personal injury cases.
A Summary Judgment ruling in Steves and Sons, Inc. v. JELD-WEN, Inc. heard in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia in 2018, provides guidance to trade secret owners seeking damages under the Defend Trade Secrets Act (“DTSA”). The Court ruled that trade-secret damages may include anticipated future use of the trade secret under the DTSA if the anticipated future use is non-speculative and based on solid evidence.
What does it mean when a defendant pleads, Not Guilty by Reason of Insanity (NGRI)? You’ve probably heard the term “insanity” thrown around but most people don’t know the legal criteria for an NGRI plea. “Insanity” is a legal term rather than a medical or mental health term. In order to understand how criminal responsibility is evaluated, you have to have an understanding of the legal criteria of NGRI. The goal of this blog post is to provide an overview of the laws regarding insanity and how we evaluate individuals to determine if they are not guilty by reason of insanity.
Not Guilty by Reason of Insanity vs. Incompetent to Stand Trial: What’s the Difference Between Them?
The terms insanity and competency are two legal terms that come up often in the criminal justice system. Most people get the two terms mixed up and don’t know the differences between them.
If you’ve watched enough Law and Order, you’ve probably heard the term “Incompetent to Stand Trial (IST)” or competency to stand trial. We get a lot of questions from attorneys asking us if their clients are competent to stand trial. The rules and laws surrounding competency to stand trial can be confusing and difficult to understand. The goal of this blog post is to provide an overview of the laws regarding competency to stand trial and how we evaluate individuals to determine if they are competent.
Retirement plan administrators will be able to electronically deliver certain disclosure documents to plan participants under new rules proposed by the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) on October 22, 2019. The proposal is expected to save an estimated $2.4 billion of net costs over the next 10 years for ERISA-covered retirement plans through reduced mailing, printing, and material expenses.
Neuropsychological Evaluation of Traumatic Brain Injury in Personal Injury Cases: The Definitive Guide
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is getting more attention than ever before. Media outlets have done a great job at highlighting the impact of TBI and Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) on football players. This extra attention and research are great news for anyone that’s experienced a TBI.
Personal injury evaluations have become common place in personal injury and worker’s compensation litigation. We get a lot of requests from personal injury attorneys to complete psychological or neuropsychological evaluations for their personal injury cases. Psychological and neuropsychological damages (e.g. traumatic brain injury) in personal injury cases can be more complicated to evaluate than physical health-related damages. We wrote this article to help answer the common questions that come up in these cases. The goal of this article is to: 1. Explain how we would complete a psychological or neuropsychological evaluation in a personal injury case. 2. Discuss the potential problems that attorneys need to be aware of when retaining an expert to complete a personal injury evaluation.
Civil competency is an area that gets significantly less attention than competency in criminal proceedings. It’s definitely not a topic that you are going to see on Law & Order anytime soon. We regularly get questions about civil competency and the mental capacity standards in civil litigation. While the standards for competency civil litigation have some things in common with the standards for competency in criminal proceedings, they have their own unique set of legal standards. In this article we’re going to talk about the California rules and regulations in various civil competency proceedings and how an expert assesses for competency in these cases.
In 2017, the United States Supreme Court ruled unanimously in Advocated Health Care Network v. Stapleton that the Employment Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) did not apply to church-affiliated hospitals and assumedly other church-affiliated organizations.
Provided by: Leonard J. Backer Associates LLC
Important points to consider when evaluating seating for a high use restaurant, hotel, casino, timeshare resort, university or cruise line environment.
Research from The PEW Charitable Trusts (PEW) has evaluated what policies and factors could be inhibiting certain states from reducing their public pension system funding gaps.
Provided by: Context Corporation
In this article, the author explains the basics of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA)--in particular the Automatic Telephone Dialing System (ATDS) element of the statute. He illustrates the risks associated with the use of "dialers" to communicate via voice or text and provides a detailed checklist of Dos and Don'ts. This is a purely objective checklist that applies equally to Plaintiffs and Defendants.