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Forensic Psychiatric Evaluations + Court Testimony in All US States and Canada

A Well thought out evaluation and testimony by a psychiatrist expert witness, can dramatically alter the outcome of your legal case

Forensic Psychiatrist


How to find a psychiatrist expert Witness?

It is important to find an expert witness who will both understand your case & ethically work in the best interest of the client.

About Dr Gundu Reddy:

Dr Gundu Reddy is a Board Certified Online Psychiatrist with ten years experience practicing forensic psychiatry and fifteen years experience practicing clinical psychiatry.

Dr Reddy has served as an expert witness in many high profile cases, both in the private and public sector, working for both plaintiff and defence. She has submitted over two hundred evaluations for court and has made over thirty courtroom appearances.

Dr Reddy has served on the ' ethics committee and the 'Forensic Committee.' for three years at Manhattan Psychiatric Center and Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Facility.

Dr Reddy is experienced in record review, clinical evaluation and testimony . She has supervised NYU & Mount Sinai residents during their forensic psychiatry rotations at Manhattan Psychiatric Center.

Dr Reddy's practice :

Criminal Defence, Family Law, Civil Law, Estate Law, Medical Malpractice & more

  • Works for the best interest of the client, and ensures that all mitigating factors need to be considered in order to reach a fair verdict.
  • Extracts information legally and clinically relevant information from records, collateral, and clinical interview.
  • Presents information and opinions in a clear and organized manner which is easy for a nonclinical or legal professional to understand.
  • Supports testimony with clear reasoning and evidence therefore provides credible testimony and a better outcome for the client.
  • Backs up her opinions with data, both from the interview, records, collateral information, literature, as well as her personal experience.
  • Practices both in-person and online forensic psychiatric evaluations and court testimony. Dr. Reddy states she is equally comfortable with both, and it is the ‘quality, strength and credibility,’ of the testimony which determines the outcome.
Contact for full CV and references:



  • Dr Reddy graduated Medical School at King ‘s College London . She trained as an Emergency Room doctor in the UK before completing psychiatry residency at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York. She has continued to train in psychodynamic psychotherapy at the NYU psychoanalytic institute. She is certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.
  • “My psychodynamic training has helped immensely both with criminal defence as well as family law evaluations and testimony especially when considering the role of trauma in affecting human behavior. All mitigating factors need  considered, in order to create a through and relevant testimony.”

Clinical Experience

  • Dr Gundu Reddy has worked in both public and private psychiatry. She has worked for three years at Manhatten Psychiatric Centre for three years, both in the clinical and forensic setting. She has conducted violence risk assessments, and created discharge plans for inmates at Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Centre, as well as working with patients on 730 final status to restore fitness to stand trial, and evaluate fitness for discharge.
  • Dr Reddy has fifteen years experience practicing clinical psychiatry. She has worked in inpatient, outpatient, and consultation liason and emergency room psychiatry.
  • Contact for full CV and references : 18333124222

Psychiatrist Expert Witness Services


Family Law

Parental Alienation
Child Protective Services
Child Custody Evaluation

Civil Practice Law

Civil Law Defense
Psychological Damage

Criminal Defense

Insanity Defense
Fitness For Trial

Estate Law

Undue Influence
Testamentary Capacity

Medical Malpractice

Records Review
Standards of Care
Malpractice Defense

Risk Assessment

Violence Risk
Fitness For Discharge

When would I need a Forensic Psychiatrist?

You may need a forensic psychiatrist or psychiatrist expert witness in areas of law such as:
Criminal defence, Family law, Undue influence, Guardianship, Mental health defence, fitness for duty, Sexual Offenders Registration, Fitness to work and personal injury.
  • You may need a psychiatrist expert witness in order to help a judge or jury or employer understand an individual 's mental illness, and mitigating factors that may affect their past and current behavior.
  • Sometimes the purpose of an online psychiatrist is to demonstrate that a client is no longer a danger to themselves or others, despite a history of mental illness, can make their own decisions, can return to work, drive, and other community privileges.
  • If you have been affected with mental illness , or are being treated for mental illness, you may need a psychiatrist expert witness to demonstrate that you have received treatment, that symptoms have resolved and it is safe for you to take care of your children.
  • A psychiatrist expert witness can be used in personal injury and medical malpractice defence. For example in the case of malingering , or when poor outcome to plaintiff occurs, despite standards of care being followed.

Contact for full CV and references:


Should I have my Forensic Psychiatric Evaluation in person or online?

Ultimately it is the quality, strength and credibility of the evaluation & testimony which determines outcome whether in person or online. Both can be equally effective.

Contact for full CV and references:


Video testimony is welcomed as the norm in courtrooms
during the covid.

Most forensic centers now have in house facilities for online forensic evaluations.

Online forensic evaluations and testimony are now frequently
replacing inpatient evaluations.

Many individuals opt for a combination of online forensic psychiatric evaluation, and in-person court testimony for convenience, cost, and accessibility.

How does an online forensic psychiatric evaluation differ
from and in person evaluation?

- An online Forensic Psychiatry Evaluation and Testimony should be performed with the same care as an in-person testimony.
- Exactly the same Professional Standards Apply for Video Evaluations as for in person evaluations.
- An online evaluation is preferable when a client has to be interviewed multiple times, and when interviewing children or when the client lives a significant distance from the preferred expert.

How does a forensic psychiatric evaluation differ from a clinical psychiatric evaluation?

A forensic psychiatric evaluation differs from a clinical psychiatric evaluation in the following aspects:

1. A forensic psychiatric evaluation is usually longer and more thorough than a clinical psychiatric evaluation. This is because a forensic psychiatric evaluation considers legal factors as well as clinical factors.

2. A forensic psychiatric evaluation has to be written in a way that all relevant parties, including a judge and jury understand key factors, so that would include more details, and explanation of past and present events.

3. A forensic psychiatric evaluation may answer a particular question, for example, common questions include:
  • What biopsychosocial factors could have contributed to an individual committing a crime?
  • Were standards of care followed while evaluating and treating this individual's mental illness?
  • Is this individual likely be a danger to their children or be at risk of harming their children if granted custody or allowed unsupervised visit? Does this individual have PTSD, and if so how have symptoms affected the course of their life ?
  • Does this individual have dementia, and if so do they still have capacity to make a will?
  • Is this individual , was was this individual vulnerable to have undue influence?
  • What is the SORA RAI score of an individual?

4. A forensic psychiatric evaluation and testimony will be subject cross examination in court and deposition so has to explain the evidence, how the expert came to their opinions and conclusions.

5. A forensic psychiatric evaluation has to explain the rationale for differences in opinion with prior evaluations and other clinicians and experts.

6. A forensic psychiatric evaluation usually includes a through review of past medical records and collateral information. Extra care must be taken to ensure that the evaluation is consistent with records and collateral, and discrepancies must be explained.

7. A forensic psychiatric evaluation must take into account: malingering, bias, and conflict of interest especially when reviewing prior evaluations and collateral information.

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Advantages of using a Psychiatrist Expert Witness

18333124222 /

A thoughtful expert witness evaluation can potentially:

  • Improve your chance of a fair hearing
  • Help a judge & jury understand important factors regarding your case
  • Save you legal fees
  • Accelerate the legal process
  • Facilitate out of Court Settlement
  • Reduce the Severity of your charges
  • Shorten your sentence
  • Help ensure your civil liberties
  • Facilitate child custody

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Frequently asked questions

Although a psychiatric evaluation may not change a 'guilty,' or 'not guilty,' verdict, the severity of the charge and the length of sentencing can be very much depend on an expert testimony.
A clear well written expert  psychiatric evaluation with or without  testimony, by increasing a judge or jury's understanding of the individual, as well as mitigating factors leading to the individual breaking the law, an individual's risk to the community, and potential for rehabilitation back into the community, can lead to an individual being released on parole, or be granted a ' sentence served.' verdict.'

An example of where a psychiatrist evaluation may lead to a more lenient charge or sentence, is where an individual may have had an undiagnosed mental illness, where an individual had sought help but had been denied medical care, or where an individual's behaviour was caused by a side effect to certain prescription medication such as dopamine agonists.

Some Factors Determining the length of sentence, and whether a person receives a jail sentence can include :

-Whether an individual intended to commit a crime

-The presence of mental illness

-Vulnerability to coercion

-Vulnerability of Exploitation

-Presence of Medical illness and side effects to prescription medication

-External mitigating factors

Risk Assessment as to the individual's  likeliness to reoffend, demonstration of  internal and external protective factors which would prevent an individual from reoffending

Dangerousness and risk to the community - Demonstrating that an individual would not be a danger to the community of released.

Community Supports- demonstrating that an individual has adequate community supports to prevent relapse of mental illness or psychotic symptoms

Forensic psychiatrists and forensic psychologists can both conduct clinical evaluations. However, a forensic psychiatrist is a medical doctor who has completed a psychiatry residency and is Board Certified in the field of Psychiatry and Neurology and may have completed a forensic psychiatry fellowship. A forensic psychiatrist can evaluate and also testify in court  about social and  biological aspects of mental illness or disorders.This includes genetic, developmental, endocrine, infectious, neoplastic, neurological , structural pharmacological and other causes of mental illness and changes in behavior. A forensic psychiatrist can recommend laboratory tests and medications if needed.
Sometimes during divorce cases one spouse may be alienated from the children , or not allowed to see their children except with supervised visitation only. This is often the case when one parent suffers from mental illness, or is accused of suffering from mental illness.

Unless there is clear evidence to sustained abuse towards the children , alienation from one or more parents is almost always detrimental towards the children . Diagnosis of mental illness or substance use disorder in many cases should not be a reason to deny unsupervised visits.

A child custody evaluation or parenting evaluation should include :

1. Psychiatric evaluation with explanation of any psychiatric illness, and what efforts have been made to receive treatment so the individual can foster a relationship with their child.

2. Review of medical records, with explanation of past diagnosis , what treatment has been received and if symptoms have resolved. A prior history of mental illness is not usually a contraindication for child custody unless an individual has not received treatment or symptoms have not resolved. Past or current mental illness is not a contraindication to child custody, providing the parent is not abusive to the child, is not neglecting the child and is not behaving in ways to endanger the child.

3. Explanation of any substance abuse history, including how long the parent has been sobre, and what ongoing treatment has been received . Providing the parent is in remission and receiving treatment, a history of substance abuse is not a contraindication to child custody.

4. Collateral information , from the child if old enough, other older siblings, employers, housekeepers, friends, anyone else who is close to the individual, sees the individual closely on a regular basis, and can vouch that they have have not observed indicators of substance abuse, psychosis or erratic behavior. Collateral information is extremely important as it is common for the for former partner or opposing counsel to exaggerate symptoms, or fabricate information in order to build a case against an individual in order to obtain child custody.

5. Explanation of accusations and former judgements, when an motion is served to deny a parent of custody of a child, it usually involves some damming accusations . These accusations are often untrue, grossly exaggerated, or paint a very distorted picture, for example ' she went to the ER twice for a panic attack in 2010 , ' becomes ' she has a history of emotional instability with multiple psychiatric hospitalizations.' or he got into a bar fight in college in 2001, and the police were called, becomes ' he has a history of arrests for violent behavior.' It is important the an individual is allowed to tell their side of the story during the psychiatric evaluation as details can be lost during the court process.

7. Examination of any forensic psychiatric evaluations for clinical accuracy and evidence of bias. Psychiatric evaluations performed by experts hired by the opposing counsel can sometimes show signs of bias. Evidence of bias can include, writing the report based on testimony from the former spouse, while not performing a through psychiatric evaluation, not reviewing records, not collecting unbiased collateral, ignoring recommendations of other health care providers, omitting information that would place the individual in a positive light.

Legitimate reasons to deny joint custody and unsupervised visits may include :

1. History of excessive violence and sadistic behaviour towards the child. (this does not include spanking within the limits of the law in younger children).

2. Ongoing substance abuse and inconsistency with treatment (this does not include short relapses if mostly sobre).

3. Poor insight with regards to mental illness and non adherence to treatment (this does not include asking for a change of medication , reporting side effects to medication, or requesting a second opinion with regards to medication).

4. Refusal to participate in family therapy if relationship with children is stressed.

5. Consistent neglect of children.

6. Children report feeling safe and uncomfortable around the parent concerned.

7. The parent has endangered the child and shown gross neglect on more than one occasion, eg drinking and driving, not picking the child up from school, and other areas of poor judgement.

Even in the case of past neglect, or distressing behaviour due to mental illness, rather than wilful neglect or harm, strategies can be implemented to safely increase access to the child, as parental alienation is thought to be harmful to a child. The role of a forensic psychiatrist as well as evaluating risk would also be to solve problems and provide suggestions as to how to foster a relationship between children and parents.

A forensic psychiatrist or psychiatrist expert witness must be able to differentiate the subjective from the objective, and put aside their personal feelings and bias.

A forensic psychiatrist or psychiatrist expert witness must act in the best interest of the client by presenting all relevant data that will assist the client in receiving a fair representation and not omit relevant information or cut corners.

A  forensic psychiatrist who says things which are not credible, not believable or obviously not true, is likely to harm a client because the whole testimony and report will lose credibility and recommendations are unlikely to be followed. A good psychiatrist expert witness will say things which are truthful, but clearly present all relevant data that would be helpful to the client, and should be considered during the legal process

Rather than saying things which are not credible, the best possible outcome for the client is usually achieved when an expert witness can back up their statements and opinions, by data, literature review, clinical interview, records review and previous experience.

Contact for full CV and references:


How does a telepsychiatry visit work?

Cloud-based software means no downloads
All you need is a computer or mobile device and internet

step 1

We schedule a tech demo with a live clinical assistant

step 2

We send a link to your email

step 2

We send a link to your

step 3

You click the link from your computer or phone

step 4

You will see Dr. Reddy on the big screen

step 5

You will complete your clinical psychiatric interview

step 6

Records are collected & evaluated

step 7

You click the link from your computer or phone

step 8

You will receive your prescriptions

Contact for full CV and references: