Tarasoff at Thirty: How Developments in Science and Policy Shape the Common Law
25 Pages Posted: 15 Feb 2007
In an article for a symposium issue of the Cincinnati Law Review on the thirtieth anniversary of the Tarasoff decision, finding therapists potentially liable in tort for the violent acts of their patients, I address two types of change that have occurred in the past three decades: change in the science of violence risk assessment, and change in American mental health policy. In Part I, I analyze the growing body of empirical research supporting the proposition that in order to maximize validity, violence risk assessments must be either partially or completely structured. In Part II, I consider current developments in American mental health policy on outpatient commitment and its implications for violence prevention and for vicarious liability.
Keywords: violence, risk assessment, tort, psychiatry, psychology
JEL Classification: K13
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation