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Roger
Roger, Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 31010
Experience:  BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
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Opposing counsel wants to argue that adjustment disorder supports

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Opposing counsel wants to argue that adjustment disorder supports his claim that there is "mental instability". How do I counter?

Kirk Adams : Hi - my name is XXXXX XXXXX I'm a Family Law litigation attorney. Thanks for your question.
Kirk Adams : Is there a medical expert/psychologist, etc. testifying on behalf of the other side to support this claim?
Customer:

No, there is a psych eval that says adjustment disorder related to not being able to see my son or communicate properly with ex regarding his status

Customer:

nowhere does it say mental instability

Kirk Adams : Ok. Thanks.
Customer:

it only says not a danger to himself or others

Customer:

but recommends ongoing therapy

Customer:

although doesn't say if it can be as needed

Kirk Adams : Usually, the only way to counter a claim like this is to have another professional provide an opinion that an adjustment disorder is NOT a mental instability.
Kirk Adams : When you're dealing with medical conditions, etc. laymen can't testify regarding those issues.
Customer:

what if i'm a doctor?

Kirk Adams : Instead, you must have someone qualified to give an opinion about such a thing actually provide an opinion to teh court.
Kirk Adams : Well, you certainly would be qualified, but IF you're an interested party, there's the potential for a conflict of interest.
Kirk Adams : It would be much better to have someone independent speak to this.
Customer:

well anyone I hire would be an interested party?

Kirk Adams : An interested party is one who is a party to the case, or someone who has a stake in the matter's outcome.
Kirk Adams : A independent medical professional who is paid for his/her opinion shouldn't be considered an interested party.
Customer:

ok, but how can that person access the psych eval since they don't give out copies?

Kirk Adams : They're just performing a service and their compensation is not dependent on the result.
Customer:

or should i just have them write on a piece of paper that they don't believe adjustment disorder is the same as mental instability

Kirk Adams : If they documents are for litigation purposes, the court can order them to be provided, or a HIPAA release (including psych info) can be signed.
Kirk Adams : The medical provider could be hired to give an affidavit to state that an adjustment disorder is not a mental instability, but it would be better if the person reviewed the psych eval and any other documentation available upon which an opinion can be based.
Customer:

ok great. so to sum up, counter with an independent psychiatrist affidavit

Kirk Adams : At the least, yes.
Kirk Adams : You would likely need a written report stating that an adjustment disorder is not a mental instability with an affidavit from the professional stating that the opinion is accurate under applicable medical principles.
Kirk Adams : It may also be necessary for the medical professional to testify at some point.
Customer:

awesome, thanks.

Roger and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Thanks for allowing me to assist you. Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

Kirk