What is forensic neuropsychology as opposed to clinical neuropsychology?
While clinical neuropsychologists practice within the healthcare domain, providing services in the context of a doctor-patient relationship to patients and their physicians or other healthcare specialists, a clinical neuropsychologist may also have expertise within the forensic area and may provide forensic neuropsychological services. Forensic neuropsychological services are provided to inform a legal proceeding. While these services are sometimes provided at the direct request of the person to be evaluated, they are usually requested by a third party (e.g., the court, an attorney, or a worker’s compensation insurance company). In these cases, the neuropsychologist’s client is the third party, and the information generated from neuropsychological examination is provided to the third party.
The most common referrals for forensic neuropsychological examination are personal injury and medical malpractice claims. The examination is useful for establishing whether or not the brain was injured, the extent and nature of injury if present, the effect of such on daily life, and prognosis. For more information, see Legal Consultation.