It is the stated philosophy of this practice that we do not participate in lawsuits of any type on a plaintiff’s behalf, unless compelled to do so by subpoena or court order, or in the obvious cases of forensic evaluation/assessment in which it is understood from the onset of counseling that there is a psycho-legal context for the work. We will, however, cooperate as necessary, when our services can help to defend a client in a criminal or civil action. This policy is seen as consistent with the ethical standards of all mental health professions, in that we are charged with protecting client confidentiality, and with protecting the client from harm. As a rule, it is never in a client’s best interest to waive their right to the confidentiality of their mental health records in a dispute, as the opposing side also may use the released information. Civil lawsuits, by design, penalize one party while rewarding another, and thus, do not conform to our ethical standards, no matter how justified. This prohibition to which we adhere includes, but is not limited to, seeking compensation for damages suffered from injury, negligence, or malpractice, settlements in dissolving relationships, child custody, grievances against employers, and any other civil litigation in which we are asked to support claims against another person or entity.
This policy does not in any way intend to discount the rightfulness of a client’s seeking the support of the courts in settling disputes. We simply find that it blurs our professional roles to involve ourselves in anything other than defending a client.
When compelled into litigation, supporting the defense against criminal charges, or assessing mental status for the courts, the following fee structure applies:
$250 per hour, per associate, billed in one-tenth of the hour (6 minute) increments. This rate applies to absolutely all activity surrounding our involvement in the case: telephone time, travel, preparation, deposition, court appearance, report writing, consultation and supervision, etc. Reimbursement for lodging, meals, transportation, parking, and our own, independent counsel if necessary, and any other expense incurred is required. Our regular, hourly fee applies to face-to-face consultation, with a 50-minute minimum charge for each and every in-office appointment, which is also subject to our practice’s cancellation policy and charges.
Please note that in some instances, clinical supervision is required of a practitioner, in which case, you will be incurring charges from the clinical supervisor of record, as well as your therapist.
It is also strongly advised that you inquire as to expenses that could possibly be incurred, as not all associates in this practice live locally, and travel time and lodging could escalate costs tremendously. We will attempt to provide a fair estimate of what expenses you might expect to incur, but in no way imply that we will be bound to that estimate.