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Roger
Roger, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 32090
Experience:  BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
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Can the employer of a mental health clinician be held liable

Customer Question

Can the employer of a mental health clinician be held liable for acts done by the clinician acting in another capacity outside their regular employment but using their status as a clinician at that facility to give credibility and authority to what they are doing outside the facility. They are using their clinician status to act abusively by claiming they can because their a clinician and everyone knows where they are employed as a clinician.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Roger replied 8 years ago.

The employer should be held liable for the acts of the clinician if he/she is an employee of the company and was employed at the time of the incident. The clinician would be liable, and not the employer, if he/she is an independent contractor.

 

The employer could also escape liability if the clinician committed a criminal act.



Edited by Adam Kirk on 6/9/2010 at 5:06 AM EST
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
I need to find an attorney to help me with this issue as well as another issue related to it involving a major University in my area. I live in Portland, OR. The state bar has not turned up anyone willing to take on such a complex and out of the ordinary case.
I have several of what I beleive are civil rights violations and breach of contract along with defamation and slander against the University.
The other situation is a case against a major HMO. The clinician in question used her authority in the University and claimed herself an authority as a clinician at the HMO to slander me to the point where I was removed from my school's graduate program. She essentially called me mentally deranged because I had the audacity to question her objectivity on a paper she graded which is well within my rights to do.
This person is just one of many at the school who engaged in such behavior which I believe is now bordering on criminal. They have also sent out faculty wide emails with my picture attached insinuating I am not a safe person to be in contact with because I have an action against the school.
Expert:  Roger replied 8 years ago.
You can find an employment law attorney in your area at www.martindale.com. If you want a free attorney or legal aid, you probably won't find anyone.

If you want to file criminal charges, you can do that through local law enforcement and the DA, which will not cost you.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
That didn't work well at all. I've tried those lawyer search things as well. employment lawyers have refused to take this case because it's not specifically an employment case. Like I said before there are many different aspects to it that someone who specializes in only one or two areas would not be sufficient or consider them self to be adequate to handle something like this. I'm not satisfied with the brevity of your response given the situation I presented.
Thank you
Expert:  Roger replied 8 years ago.

Sorry if the answer wasn't longer, but I really don't believe there's much else to say. You asked about respondeat superior (employer's liability for the clinician) and then about finding a lawyer.

 

Unless you can afford to pay for an attorney, your options are very limited as many attorneys will not take cases on a contingency that appear to be a long shot, which is apparently what they perceive here.

 

All you can do is shop around and try to find a lawyer willing to help pro bono (free) or on a contingency.