TSBEP /TBHEC To Investigate Psychological Evaluator Dr. Alissa Sherry & Legal Consensus
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Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists (TSBEP) and Behavioral Health Executive Council (TBHEC) investigation into psychologist and forensic/custody evaluator Dr. Alissa Sherry / Legal Consensus.
Petition Letter to TSBEP / TBHEC
To: Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists (TSBEP) Board Members and Texas Behavioral Health Executive Committee (TBHEC)
333 Guadalupe Street, Tower 2, Room 450, Austin, Texas 78701
As a follow up to the TSBEP Board meeting on February 14, 2019, we the undersigned to this petition wish to reiterate our grave concerns about one of the TSBEP licensees, Dr. Alissa Sherry (Lic 32248) and her company Legal Consensus, who we have witnessed conducting deeply-flawed forensic custody and psychological evaluations for family courts which irreparably harmed our children, our families, and us personally. We are saddened that we must take these actions today, but in doing so, we hope to prevent this tragedy from happening to other members of the public who are court-ordered to obtain evaluations.
We urge you to take this petition and our individual complaints about Dr. Alissa Sherry and her employees at Legal Consensus seriously and investigate her actions thoroughly.
As a critical component of the family law system, we ask that this Board consider taking the actions below, among others, to remedy troubling issues pertaining to misconduct in forensic evaluations and implement long-overdue reform. It is incumbent upon the Board to uphold its professional integrity by strengthening its policies pertaining to forensic evaluations conducted by its licensees, and enforcing those rules rigorously by identifying and disciplining unethical practitioners.
Thus, we ask that the board instill more oversight and provide more direction to forensic psychologists involved in family court cases. Taking these and other steps will prevent needless devastation to Texas children and their families. It will also better inform the court as to the best interests of the children, which is the clear mandate in these cases.
To not address this important issue would be negligent; it may place the public, especially one of its most vulnerable populations - children - at further risk of irreparable damage and may further erode the public’s faith in the psychological profession.
As a result of the damaging effects that Dr. Sherry’s misconduct had on our and our children’s lives, we request that the Board conduct a comprehensive review of its policies and rules regarding forensic evaluations. Due to the critical and extensive nature of the problems discussed herein, we request that the Board create a committee to conduct such a review, and have among its members at least two (2) parents to represent the public’s perspective.
Requests and Recommendations
Given the sheer volume and patterns of misconduct in Alissa Sherry and Legal Consensus' custody and psychological evaluations, we request
- that you require Dr. Sherry to undergo a physical and mental evaluation due to a reasonable suspicion of impairment per Texas Occupations Code Section 501.158 Competency Requirements. In conjunction with its own investigations, this action will inform the Board as to this licensee’s competency and further, prevent this potentially impaired practitioner from putting other clients at risk of harm.
- Until a proper investigation can be completed, we request that the Board suspend forensic evaluations conducted by Dr. Alissa Sherry and Legal Consensus altogether from the Texas family law courts.
For all forensic custody and psychological evaluations conducted by Board licensees, we make these requests, including but not limited to:
- Provide and enforce a strict requirement that opinions and statements be validated methodically and scientifically. Require evaluators to clearly identify information that was not substantiated and rationale for not doing so.
- Establish and enforce rigorous rules when diagnosing individuals for forensic family law cases.
- Require and enforce evaluators to spend equal amounts of time with parents (as well as their attorneys) and children (including time spent independent of parents).
- Set and enforce stringent guidelines about collateral informants regarding their reliability and objectivity, including but not limited to, requiring all informants to sign affidavits certifying the truth, completeness, and accuracy of information attributed to them in the final evaluation.
- Prohibit an evaluator from recommending the dismissal of other professionals.
- Prohibit and enforce all psychologists from ex parte communications.
- Set and enforce limitations on time allowed for forensic evaluations, both psychological and custody.
- Set and enforce fees and costs associated with, including a maximum cost, for forensic evaluations, both psychological and custody.
- Conduct regular audits of forensic psychologists, including but not limited to, their methodology, conduct, and reports.
- Provide a clearly defined process for review and authentication of the evaluation report prior to finalizing, including corrections, and include such in the final report.
- Require all communications between evaluator, attorneys, and all parties are via email and made available to all parties involved. Any telephone conversations should be recorded.
- Enforce evaluators adhering to the court-ordered scope of services.
- Require all forensic evaluators to be proficient in and employ trauma-informed methods.
We make these requests as parents or families who were harmed by the unethical conduct and malpractice of Dr. Alissa Sherry. Please recognize that we, the undersigned, may represent only a fraction of families negatively impacted by Dr. Sherry. Due to fear of retaliation, legal advice, and pending litigation, others may not have come forward as of this date. In reality, once a family is court-ordered to obtain a psychological evaluation, there is little recourse to do otherwise.
Though all of our stories are different, there are unignorable similarities and patterns in our forensic evaluations performed by Dr. Sherry. In an attempt to counter the harm of these deeply-flawed evaluations, some of us obtained peer reviews of Dr. Sherry’s evaluations. These practitioners also identified a disturbing pattern of misconduct.
Misconduct and Unethical Conduct by Dr. Alissa Sherry and Legal Consensus
- Misdiagnoses after no significant contact with the client; with no client history of psychological issues; and which contradicted other professionals’ opinions. Dr. Sherry regularly diagnoses psychosis in a statistically impossible percentage of divorced parents as compared to the percentage in the general public.
- Misuse of psychological testing, including the Rorschach test, and use of outdated tests
- The inclusion of unreliable, biased collateral informants and the exclusion of reliable collateral informants
- Failed to base forensic opinions on information sufficient to provide substantiation for each finding; selectively included and excluded information to the extent that it misled and inaccurately portrayed the situation
- Issued reports containing errors and unsupported opinions; failed to validate and substantiate information
- Failed to recognize a lack of objectivity; needlessly biased treatment of the two parents
- Failed to comply with court-ordered scope, including failure to assess parenting attributes
- Paraphrasing and misrepresenting events to the extent that it significantly confused and misled the court with inaccurate information
- Conducted evaluations without the requisite competency
- Violated ethical principles and Board rules
- Inappropriate billing practices
- Engaged in dual relationships
- Potential improper supervision
- Misrepresented her services as legal services (e.g., Legal Consensus, and online advertisements)
Harm Caused by Dr. Alissa Sherry and Legal Consensus' Unethical, Flawed Evaluations
As you can imagine, these evaluations took a significant, damaging toll on our children, families, and us in many respects, including psychological, legal and financial. Dr. Sherry’s evaluations of us resulted in these and other harmful effects.
- Partial and total loss of our children and grandchildren … precious time that we won’t get back
- Likewise, our children’s loss of us … also, precious time that they won’t get back
- Financial hardship and even ruin … cumulatively, millions of dollars in direct expenses for Dr. Sherry’s evaluations, expenses for litigation relating to the evaluations, and expenses for second opinions and peer reviews of the evaluations. Currently, our average cost of just the custody evaluation alone is $61,356 per person and the average spent on litigation and direct court expenses recovering from these false evaluations is $475,875 per person. Many of us have had to sell our homes and/or experienced homelessness.
- Vulnerability and injustice in litigation. Misdiagnoses and misleading findings are seized upon and exploited by opposing counsel in proceedings.
- Stigma from misdiagnoses
- Trauma from the entire process
Dr. Sherry’s evaluations represent a form of harassment, not to mention potential malpractice.
In closing, in the coming months, we will be filing individual complaints and again, we urge the Board to take these licensing complaints, and others like ours, very seriously. It would be extremely negligent of the Board to dismiss complaints against psychologists who are involved in family court cases. It would give unethical psychologists unabated opportunity to continue causing irreparable damage to Texas children and families.
At your earliest convenience, please let us know what, if any, actions the Board will take as a result of the public comments from its February 14, 2019 meeting, this petition, complaints, etc.
Thank you, in advance, for your consideration.
TSBEP COMPLAINT PROCESS SAYS TO STATE YOUR COMPLAINT IN PLAIN SIMPLE LANGUAGE THEN COMPLAINTS ARE DISMISSED BECAUSE THEY CANNOT STAND UP IN A COURT OF LAW - HOW EXACTLY ARE LAYPEOPLE SUPPOSED TO WRITE A COMPLAINT THAT WILL STAND UP IN A COURT OF LAW. TSBEP ACTIONS ARE SIMPLY TO DISMISS THE COMPLAINT IN ORDER TO PROTECT THEIR OWN PREVIOUS BOARD MEMBERS FROM EMBARRASSMENT AND DISCIPLINARY ACTION
Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists (TSBEP) Instructions for complaints:
"State in simple, narrative language why you think the professional violated the Psychologists' Licensing Act or Board rules."
But then when you read the fine print:
"There must be sufficient evidence to establish probable cause of the misconduct. Therefore, if no probable cause can be determined as a result of the investigation, or if there is not sufficient evidence to withstand a court hearing, the complaint is referred to the Dismissal Committee"
You are lead to believe you can fill out one page of complaint information in layman's terms. The TSBEP takes 18-24 months to make a determination, eventually dismissing because the complaint won't stand up in a court of law. By this time people have moved on, are broke after battling the family court system and have no ability to draft a second complaint that will stand up in a court of law. The TSBEP has set their complaint system up so that anyone that complains about custody evaluations or psychological evaluations is guaranteed to not succeed.
And when an inquiry is made on how to appeal the decision Darrel Spinks the Executive Director of the TSBEP stated "The dismissal of a complaint may not be appealed by a complainant or a third-party"
Known Complaints against Alissa Sherry / Legal Consensus
(Note these are only people that have reach out to us, NOT a complete list, we are sure there are more):
Complaints against Alissa Sherry Dismissed by TSBEP without Any Disciplinary Action Taken since 2015:
Complainant 1 - JH #2015-00110-9966
Complainant 2 - RF #2015-00153-9966
Complainant 3 - BS # 2015-XXXXX-9966
Complainant 4 - CM #2016-0037-9966
Complainant 5 - KC #2016-00123-9966
Complainant 6 - TP #2017-00057-9966
Complainant 7 - CH #2017-XXXXX-9966
Complainant 8 - JN #2018-00053-9966
Current Complaints against Alissa Sherry / Legal Consensus Under Investigation by TSBEP:
Complainant 9 - LW #2019-00069-9966
Complainant 10 - CC #2019-00070-9966
Complainant 11 - CB #2019-0071-9966
Complainant 12 - SG #2019-000100-9966
Complainant 13 - CR #2019-XXXXX-9966
Complainant 14 - DJ #2019-00130-9966
Complainant 15 - RF #2020-00004-9966 Dr. Alissa Sherry;
#2020-00005-13268 Michelle Munevar;
Section 501.203(d) of TSBEP Rules States that "The Board shall analyze complaints filed with the board to identify any trends or issues related to certain violations.
CUSTODY EVALUATORS VYING FOR ABSOLUTE IMMUNITY SO THEY CAN CONTINUE CONDUCTING $50,000 FRAUDULENT EVALUATIONS
Alissa Sherry is vying for immunity from complaints with the TSBEP / TBHEC. She wants immunity from not only lawsuits but from complaints with her licensing organization. She wants to make it absolutely impossible for anyone to have any recourse at all against her many multiple violations of Texas Laws and Psychologists' codes of ethics / standards of practice. These violations have been exhibited in dozens of cases that show clear fraud, negligence, bias, malpractice, incomplete work, etc.
As a custody evaluator, she has complete power to make custody decisions that the judges follow, charging $50,000 an evaluation, profiting off dragging cases out and making fraudulent recommendations that keep the cases in litigation.
She has already been awarded complete absolute judicial immunity for any actions that she takes in psychological evaluations so that she absolutely cannot be sued. She now wants complete immunity against any complaints that might get filed against her leaving absolutely zero recourse against any fraudulent or negligent actions.
Dr. Sherry vyed for other professionals to come to speak to the TSBEP. Attached is an email that she sent to all attorneys and psychologists that she had emails for. https://www.change.org/p/investigation-into-forensic-custody-evaluator-dr-alissa-sherry-and-legal-consensus/u/25395406 Among those professionals were several that had clients who had Dr. Sherry on their cases and these professionals had witnessed the fraudulent and neglectful actions of Dr. Sherry, so they forwarded this email onto their clients that had been affected. Many of these clients then also attended this meeting opposing any increased immunity for psychologists / custody evaluators.
Dr. Sherry now claims that this group of crazy disgruntled previous clients is the reason for her actions. When her actions are actually the reason that all these previous clients found each other and are now speaking out about her abusing the family court system for her personal and financial gain.
TBHEC NEEDS NEW AND UPDATED RULES FOR PSYCHOLOGISTS
We would like to request that the TBHEC create and actually enforce rules against allowing psychologists to use hearsay, allegations, assumptions, and blatant lies in court proceedings and custody evaluations. We have proof that many children have been ripped away from parents by Dr Sherry with NO PROOF of doing anything wrong! We need to require psychologists to have a standard rule that no documents/reports will be considered unless FACTS of all allegations are attached and that any supposed allegations cannot be put into evaluations unless they have been validated. We have lost years with our children due to a flawed system that currently allows allegations, lies, and opinions.
TSBEP - BOARD OF PSYCHOLOGY (under TBHEC now) REFUSES TO ENFORCE THEIR OWN RULES
One of the biggest issues that people have has been getting a copy of their file from the forensic evaluators so that we can submit a complete complaint with evidence.
Dr Sherry has refused to even respond to multiple written requests for our files. When we complained to the TSBEP about this Darrel Spinks Executive Director of TSBEP stated "she is under no obligation under TSBEP rules to provide you with any records because you were neither her patient nor a client. See the definitions of those terms under Board rule 465.1. In fact, the court that appointed Dr. Sherry is considered her client under our rules"
After reading TSBEP 465.18 and after seeking advice from outside professionals we have several points below that counter these claims.
First of all the court did not sign the contract with Legal Consensus (Dr. Sherry's company), We signed the contracts. The court did not pay Dr. Sherry $50,000 for her services, we paid for the services. Both of these facts make us the client in a contractual relationship.
Page 3 of the Policies and Consent form that we all signed with Dr. Sherry clearly states: RELEASE OF FILE. Both attorneys will be cc’d on correspondence about substantive issues arising in your case. Section 107.112 of the Texas Family Code indicates that we are required to make available a copy of our file related to your case for either attorney/party that requests such. The code does not mandate the requirement of a subpoena for these records and as such, if such a request is made, we will provide a copy to each side without a subpoena, unless the court issues an order restricting such disclosure.
TSBEB's position is that Dr. Sherry does not have to abide by the contract that she signed with us. Also that she does not have to abide by the Texas Family Code The TSBEP is of no help in enforcing psychologists to abide by Family code and their contracts!
Page 1 of the Fee Agreement for Forensic Examination that we signed with Dr. Sherry clearly states: Client or Examinee. The client is the retaining attorney in a consultation relationship and the examinees are the litigants named in the court order in an evaluation relationship unless otherwise agreed upon in writing or by court order. (Our court orders do not make any statements otherwise and there was no agreement in writing making the court the client.) Dr. Sherry's own signed agreement denies TSBEP's claim that the court is the client and states that the client is the retaining attorney. In the absence of an attorney, the Examinee is pro se and is the client, otherwise, TSBEP would be discriminating against pro se litigants. We all signed an agreed order asking for a custody evaluation that was entered into our cases and approved and signed by the Judge. We are the clients and the ones that agreed to or asked for a custody evaluation.
According to TSBEP rules and definitions that Darrel Spinks referenced in 465.1 there are only three definitions listed that pertain to persons:
--- "Client" means a party other than a patient seeking or obtaining psychological services, as defined in §501.003 of the Occupations Code, for a third-party with the goal of assisting or caring for that third-party or answering a referral question through the use of forensic psychological services.
--- "Licensee" means a licensed psychologist, provisionally licensed psychologist, licensed psychological associate, licensed specialist in school psychology, applicants to the Board, and any other individual whom the Board has the authority to discipline under these Rules.
--- "Patient" means a person who receives psychological services, as defined in §501.003 of the Occupations Code, regardless of whether the patient or a third- party pays for the services. The term "patient" shall include a client if the client is a person listed in §611.004(a)(4) or (5) of the Health and Safety Code who is acting on a patient's behalf. A person who is the subject of a forensic evaluation is not considered to be a patient under these rules.
We clearly are not the Licensee and Darrell Spinks says that we are not a Client or a Patient. TSBEP has refused to point us to the definition in their rules that specifies what our role is in this contractual agreement.
It is our stance that we would need to fall under one of the existing definitions and the only existing definition that would apply would be the client, just like the contract with Dr. Sherry States
465.18 (e) (6) (A) of the TSBEP RULES for Forensic Services states: (A) Licensees shall comply with the requirements of Tex. Fam. Code Ann. §107.112 regarding:
(i) the disclosure of communications between evaluation participants;
(ii) the creation and retention of records relevant to the evaluation; and
(iii) access to evaluation records
TSBEP's own rules very definitely specify that we have access to our evaluation records when there is forensic services being rendered.
Sec. 107.112 (c) of the Texas Family Code regarding COMMUNICATIONS AND RECORDKEEPING OF CHILD CUSTODY EVALUATOR states: Except for records obtained from the department in accordance with Section 107.111, a private child custody evaluator shall, after completion of an evaluation and the preparation and filing of a child custody evaluation report under Section 107.113, make available in a reasonable time the evaluator's records relating to the evaluation on the written request of an attorney for a party, a party who does not have an attorney, and any person appointed under this chapter in the suit in which the evaluator conducted the evaluation, unless a court has issued an order restricting disclosure of the records.
So to clarify, the TSBEP'S stance is that Dr. Sherry and other custody evaluators do not have to conform to TSBEP board rule 465.18(e)(6)(A) nor do they have to comply with Texas Family Code rule 107.112(c). TSBEP has refused to show us where Dr. Sherry and custody evaluators are exempt from abiding by these laws and rules.
Darrel Spinks, the Executive Director of the TSBEP has stated in writing via email that TSBEP refuses to follow their own rules and Texas laws nor are they enforcing that their licensees follow the codes and laws. This email documentation has been copied to us and can be provided via a request to firstname.lastname@example.org
The last response from Mr. Spinks stated
"Please understand I'm not going to engage in a debate with you via email, but a court is clearly included under our definition of client. You were technically an examinee, but that is not a defined term under our rules...you are not a patient or client under our rules. I cannot do any better than point you to our rules, and the definitions in them and I will not entertain any further discussion on these topics.
And yes TSBEP and Dr. Sherry do have to comply with our own rules and Ch. 107 of the Family Code, but your understanding of what the law is or requires does not bind this agency."
And Mr. Spinks has refused to respond or assist in any way with this matter.
When these matters are in regard to dozens of people that have spent millions of dollars trying to overcome fraudulent and negligent custody evaluations by the SAME evaluator (a psychologist that was a previous board member of the TSBEP). When we need copies of our files to file complete complaints and the TSBEP codes and Texas law states that we have the right to these files. When there are 15 complaints against this SAME evaluator and TSBEP is simply dismissing them one by one. Do the described actions above by Darrel Spinks and the TSBEP seem to be what is truly in the best interest of the children that are affected? Or is it more like the Board protecting their own trying to keep us from filing more complete complaints?
EACH CUSTODY EVALUATION BY DR ALISSA SHERRY WHEN SECOND OPINION PROFESSIONAL REVIEW IS PERFORMED HAS 40-50 VIOLATIONS OF RUES AND CODES - ALL IGNORED BY TSBEP AND TO DATE TSBEP HAS SIMPLY DISMISSED ALL COMPLAINTS WITH NO FURTHER INVESTIGATION
There are 40-50 violations in most evaluations performed by Alissa Sherry
ALISSA SHERRY and LEGAL CONSENSUS, PLLC, violated Family Code 107.115 by charging an average of $50,000 in fees for the custody evaluation.
ALISSA SHERRY and LEGAL CONSENSUS, PLLC, violated the following Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists rules:
463.8- Licensed Psychological Assistant
c) must practice under the supervision of a licensed psychologist and may not practice independently, unless meet certification standards
465.4- Employment (LPA)
B (2) Data gathering, administering, proctoring, or scoring of NON-projective tests
A (1) A licensee is responsible for the supervision of all individuals that the licensee employs or utilizes to provide psychological services of any kind.
(2) Licensees ensure that their supervisees have legal authority to provide psychological services.
(3) Licensees delegate only those responsibilities that supervisees may legally and competently perform.
(a) Licensees maintain current knowledge of scientific and professional information that ensures competency in every area in which they provide services.
(b) Licensees provide services in an unfamiliar area or involving new techniques only after first undertaking appropriate study and training, including supervision, and/or consultation from a professional competent to provide such services.
(c) In emerging areas in which generally recognized standards for preparatory training do not exist, licensees take reasonable steps to ensure the competence of their work and to protect patients, clients, research participants, and other affected individuals from the potential for harm.
(d) Licensees are responsible for ensuring that all individuals practicing under their supervision are competent to perform those services.
(e) Licensees who delegate performance of certain services such as test scoring are responsible for ensuring that the entity to whom the delegation is made is competent to perform those services.
(f) Licensees who lack the competency to provide particular psychological services to a specific individual must withdraw and refer the individual to a competent appropriate service provider.
(g) Licensees refrain from initiating or continuing to undertake an activity when they know or should know that there is a substantial likelihood that personal problems or conflicts will prevent them from performing their work-related activities or producing a psychological report in a competent and timely manner. When licensees become aware of such conflicts, they must immediately take appropriate measures, such as obtaining professional consultation or assistance in order to determine whether they should limit, suspend, or terminate the engagement in accordance with Board rule §465.21 of this title (relating to Termination of Services)
465.10. Basis for Scientific and Professional Judgments.
(h) Licensees rely on scientifically and professionally derived knowledge when making professional judgments.
465.11- Informed Consent.
(a) Except in an inpatient setting where a general consent has been signed, licensees must obtain and document in writing informed consent concerning all services they intend to provide to the patient, client or other recipient(s) of the psychological services prior to initiating the services, using language that is reasonably understandable to the recipients unless consent is precluded by applicable federal or state law.
(b) Licensees provide appropriate information as needed during the course of the services about changes in the nature of the services to the patient client or other recipient(s) of the services using language that is reasonably understandable to the recipient to ensure informed consent.
(c) Licensees provide appropriate information as needed, during the course of the services to the patient client and other recipient(s) and afterward if requested, to explain the results and conclusions reached concerning the services using language that is reasonably understandable to the recipient(s).
(d) When a licensee agrees to provide services to a person, group or organization at the request of a third party, the licensee clarifies to all of the parties the nature of the relationship between the licensee and each party at the outset of the service and at any time during the services that the circumstances change.
(f) At any time that a licensee knows or should know that he or she may be called on to perform potentially conflicting roles, the licensee explains the conflict to all affected parties and adjusts or withdraws from all professional services in accordance with Board rules and applicable state and federal law. Further, licensees who encounter personal problems or conflicts as described in Board rule 465.9(i) of this title that will prevent them from performing their work-related activities in a competent and timely manner must inform their clients of the personal problem or conflict and discuss appropriate termination and/or referral to ensure that the services are completed in a timely manner.
465.15- Fees and Financial Arrangements
(a) (3) Licensees shall not withhold records solely because payment has not been received unless specifically permitted by law.
(b) Ethical and Legal Requirements.
(2) Licensees do not misrepresent their fees.
(3) Licensees do not overcharge or otherwise exploit recipients of services or payers with respect to fees.
465.16- Evaluation, Assessment, Testing, and Reports
(b) Reliability and Validity
(3) Licensees who administer, score, interpret or utilize psychological assessment techniques, tests, or instruments do so in a manner and for purposes for which there are professional or scientific bases.
(4) Licensees do not base their assessment or intervention decisions or recommendations on data or test results that are outdated for the current purpose.
(5) Licensees do not base decisions or recommendations on tests and measures that are obsolete or not useful for the current purpose.
(3) Licensees identify various test factors and characteristics of the person being assessed that might affect their professional judgment or reduce the accuracy of their interpretations when interpreting assessment result, including automated interpretations.
465.18- Forensic Services
(a) (3) All forensic opinions, reports, assessments, and recommendations rendered by a licensees must be based on information and techniques sufficient to provide appropriate substantiation for each finding.
(a) (4) A licensee who provides forensic services must comply with all other applicable Board rules and state and federal law relating to the underlying areas of psychology relating to those services.
(b) (1) Limitation on Services- A licensee who is asked to provide an opinion concerning an area or matter about which the licensee does not have the appropriate knowledge and competency to render a professional opinion shall decline to render that opinion.
(c) Describing the Nature of Services. A licensee must document in writing that subject(s) of forensic evaluations or their parents have been informed of the following:
4) the estimated amount of the fees
7) The approximate length of time required to produce any reports or written results
(d)(3) - The role of the psychologist in a child custody forensic engagement is one of a professional expert. The psychologist cannot function as an advocate and must retain impartiality and objectivity
501.351- General Authority to Delegate
A - A psychologist licensed under this chapter may delegate to a provisionally licensed psychologist, a newly licensed psychologist who is not eligible for managed care panels, a person who holds a temporary license issued under Section 501.263
B - Delegating psychologist remains responsible. Individual administering the test must inform each patient that the person is being supervised by a licensed psychologist.
C - The board may determine whether the test/service may be properly and safely delegated.
ALISSA SHERRY and LEGAL CONSENSUS, PLLC, also violated the rules regarding Chapter 107 (Custody Evaluations):
Sec. 107.0512. SOCIAL STUDY EVALUATOR: CONFLICTS OF INTEREST AND BIAS.
(a) A social study evaluator who has a conflict of interest with any party in a disputed suit or who may be biased on the basis of previous knowledge, other than knowledge obtained in a court-ordered evaluation, shall: (1) decline to conduct a social study for the suit; or (2) disclose any issue or concern to the court before accepting the appointment or assignment.
b) A social study evaluator who has previously conducted a social study for a suit may conduct all subsequent evaluations in the suit unless the court finds that the evaluator is biased.
Sec. 107.0513. GENERAL PROVISIONS APPLICABLE TO CONDUCT OF SOCIAL STUDY AND PREPARATION OF REPORT.
(a) Unless otherwise directed by a court or prescribed by a provision of this title, a social study evaluator's actions in conducting a social study shall be in conformance with the professional standard of care applicable to the evaluator's licensure and any administrative rules, ethical standards, or guidelines adopted by the state agency that licenses the evaluator.
(c) A social study evaluator shall follow evidence-based practice methods and make use of current best evidence in making assessments and recommendations.
(e) To the extent possible, a social study evaluator shall verify each statement of fact pertinent to a social study and shall note the sources of verification and information in the report.
Sec. 107.0514. ELEMENTS OF SOCIAL STUDY.
(a) The basic elements of a social study under this subchapter consist of:
(2) an interview, conducted in a developmentally appropriate manner, of each child at issue in the suit who is at least four years of age;
(7) assessment of the relationship between each child at issue in the suit and each party seeking possession of or access to the child.
(b) The additional elements of a social study under this subchapter consist of:
1) balanced interviews and observation of each child at issue in the suit so that a child who is interviewed or observed while in the care of one party to the suit is also interviewed or observed while in the care of each other party to the suit;
(2) an interview of each individual residing in a residence subject to the social study;
(3) evaluation of the home environment of each party seeking conservatorship of a child at issue in the suit or possession of or access to the child, regardless of whether the home environment is in dispute.
(c) A social study evaluator may not offer an opinion regarding conservatorship of a child at issue in a suit or possession of or access to the child unless each basic element of a social study under Subsection (a) has been completed.
Sec. 107.112. COMMUNICATIONS AND RECORDKEEPING OF CHILD CUSTODY EVALUATOR.
(c) Except for records obtained from the department in accordance with Section 107.111, a private child custody evaluator shall, after completion of an evaluation and the preparation and filing of a child custody evaluation report under Section 107.113, make available in a reasonable time the evaluator's records relating to the evaluation on the written request of an attorney for a party, a party who does not have an attorney, and any person appointed under this chapter in the suit in which the evaluator conducted the evaluation, unless a court has issued an order restricting disclosure of the records.
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