Even under the best of circumstances, the transition from one country to another is a stressful experience. Immigration can be further complicated by detention, family separations, and confusion around the asylum application process.
In addition to providing therapy, I conduct Psychological Evaluations to assist individuals and families in their immigration process. If your attorney suggests that you obtain an assessment as part of your asylum application, you’ve come to the right professional. I have worked with individuals from diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds, and I’m experienced in conducting psychological assessments.
Why Do I Need a Psychological Evaluation?
In my experience, a psychological evaluation adds tremendous value to the immigration case. A comprehensive, expert evaluation conducted by a psychologist knowledgeable about the hardships immigrants suffer and related mental health issues can be effectively used by your attorney to support your case and move forward with your immigration proceedings.
What Is a Psychological Evaluation?
An Immigration Psychological Evaluation may be used to help immigration courts determine whether an individual will be able to remain lawfully in the United States. An immigration evaluation begins with a consultation with your attorney to gather pertinent information about your case and its specific legal issues. Next, we will have an in-depth interview over the course of 1 to 2 meetings. The evaluation will include an in-depth interview, brief psychological testing, and a review of records. I may request to speak with people who know you well, for which I will seek your written consent. I will inform you about each step as it become relevant. Because each case is unique, the following types of measures are samples of instruments that may also be used for the assessment:
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Surveys
- Personality Inventories
- Cognitive / Intelligence Tests
- Mental Status Exam
- Self-Report Measures for Depression and Anxiety
- Health Inventories
- Partner Violence Surveys
- Measures of Violent Behavior And Tendencies
- Malingered Symptom Inventories
Once all the pertinent information has been collected, I will write a report or Affidabvit and share it with your attorney.
What Type of Immigration Cases Benefit From A Psychological Evaluation?
Psychological Immigration Evaluations and reports are used in four major areas of immigration proceedings:
- Extreme Hardship Cases
- Spousal Abuse (VAWA)
- Political Asylum Cases
- U Visa
What should I expect?
Many immigrants have experienced extreme trauma and/or hardship, both in their home country and during the course of immigration. You may find yourself re-experiencing that trauma during our interview, and you may feel momentarily sad, worried, or even frightened. Because I specialize in a therapeutically-driven form of assessment, many of my clients feel a sense of relief and empowerment from sharing their stories with me. Assessment can be the first step in the healing process. My goal is to provide a safe place where you can feel supported, respected, and understood.