The Psychologist’s Role as Expert Witness in Immigration Cases
2 CE Credits
Immigration laws and immigration reform are currently in the forefront of discussions in the United States Congress. Forensic psychologists hired by an immigration attorney can serve as an “Expert Witness” in cancellation of deportation cases. The psychologist’s role in conducting evaluations in an immigration cancellation of deportation case is to determine the degree of hardship and to provide expert testimony. Specifically, the forensic psychologist is often asked to evaluate the hardship that would ensue if the person is deported. This determination involves several issues, such as: cultural and language differences; psychological stressors in the deportation hearing process and distress from the potential relocation to another country. Moreover, typical cases extend beyond the direct hardship to the individual seeking cancellation of deportation to include impact on their spouse and/or children. Mental health professionals in this line of work must be informed about political trends and current immigration cancellation and deportation laws to best consult, assess, report and provide expert witness testimony at the Federal Court hearing. This course discusses the psychologist's role as an expert witness in immigration cases. A review of the psychological criteria for cancellation of deportation cases, along with legal format and related issues, is provided. Particular attention is paid to the psychological assessment of “exceptional hardship” in immigration cases involving appeal for cancellation of deportation. Ethical and forensic guidelines for the psychologist’s relationship with attorney and the court are discussed including the psychologist’s assessment process and the format for making recommendations to the Court.
Continuing education for this online course is offered through the following approvals:
After completing this course, health professionals will be able to: