Forensic Substance Abuse Evaluations
Discover if someone has a substance use disorder
Discover the extent of the problem
Discover how the problem can be treated
It's not that I'm so smart, it's just that I stay with problems longer
- Albert Einstein
Substance use evaluations are unlike typical assessments offered by treatment centers and referral agencies. This is because treatment centers or referral agencies have an agenda – treatment enrollment. This works fine when an individual has admitted to a problem and h/she is treatment ready. However, there are many people who do not yet know if they have a substance use problem or not. A thorough substance use evaluation is a way to find out.
Substance use evaluations for family and criminal law are referred to as forensic substance use evaluations because they require a fair amount of investigation and understanding of the legal context.
Note: Substance use evaluations can also be used in the private sector to gain understanding about a substance use problem and determine what the best course of action is to treat the problem.
Forensic substance use evaluations consist of:
Use of Standard Diagnostic/Assessment Instruments
The California Superior courts have admitted Colleen Moore as an expert witness in dozens of substance related family law cases.
When providing substance use evaluations for family law there are many special considerations such as, the ages of the children, the drug of choice and impact on the ability to parent, randomized testing for accountability purposes, admissible evidence and so on. It is best to hire a substance use evaluator who understands the family law context.
When are family law substance use evaluations needed?
Mediators needing more information, 3111 evaluators needing consultation and input and attorneys and judges needing an independent opinion.
How is a forensic substance use evaluation scheduled?
The best way to schedule an evaluation is to call or email me. I can typically schedule an evaluation within two weeks. Depending on the complexity of the case, it takes about two to four weeks before the final report is issued.
As a criminal attorney, you are in the unique position to make a difference in your clients' lives when they are facing DUI or drug charges. The impending consequence has their attention. They are motivated.
Here are ways to get your client the help they need:
1. Refer your client for an expert substance use evaluation.
I have found, from years of experience, that there is a way to get people talking about their substance use in a way that allows them to see exactly what the problem is. When they honestly look at the problem they are naturally open to solutions. This is what can happen in a substance use evaluation. A substance use evaluation can also help your client in court proceedings as well as provide an individualized treatment plan that will support them in turning their lives around.
2. Refer your client for coaching.
You may have clients who failed counseling, AA/NA or treatment in the past. Don't give up on these clients! So much of the time they just haven't sat in front of someone who can really identify exactly what's in the way of their abstinience and recovery success. The most rewarding part of my work is when I can engage clients in a way that they easily come to the awareness that they have a problem and that they can actually do something about it.
3. Treatment plans for sentencing.
I am pro treatment. I believe that many repeat offenders just haven't had the right treatment. My reports often convince the Court that treatment, not incarceration is the best way to go.
Additionally many substance related cases would benefit from consultation before you decide on your representation strategy.
Relapse Prevention Evaluations for Family and Criminal Law and Private Sector
Relapse Prevention Evaluations are for those who have a known substance dependence problem and need an expert to evaluate the veracity of their current abstinence and recovery participation and/or recommend a treatment and recovery plan to prevent relapse.
This type of evaluation includes a clinical interview, collateral interviews, review of supporting documents and an agreed upon written abstinence and recovery plan.
Private Substance Use Evaluations
Clinical substance evaluations are for individuals or families seeking an expert opinion about a substance use problem.
I have been providing substance use evaluations for over 25 years. I am a relapse prevention specialist. My experience and expertise will benefit individual and families because I am able to see a clear picture of the problem and I can provide you with targeted and reliable feedback about how to treat a substance use problem.
A private substance use evaluation can save you hundreds of dollars and precious time getting to little or too much treatment. Together we will identify relapse prevention plan that is individualized and relapse proof.