The Human Rights Clinic (HRC) conducts forensic psychological, medical, and gynecological evaluations of foreign-born survivors of torture and other human rights abuses for use in immigration proceedings. Evaluations are performed by HRC-trained volunteer medical and mental health professionals.
The HRC does not guarantee evaluations. Requests are assessed case-by-case, and are filled according to client eligibility for services and availability of clinician volunteers. Please be aware that provision of evaluation services may take eight weeks or longer from the time both the completed intake and the client’s statement are submitted to the HRC.
Clients must manifest symptoms of past trauma for our services to be useful: there should be residual physical scars for a physical evaluation, and at least some visible mental health issues for a mental health evaluation.
NOTE: HealthRight is only accepting evaluation requests in NY, NJ & CT
Referring attorneys should familiarize themselves with HRC procedures by reviewing the following: Introduction to the Human Rights Clinic
To request an evaluation please submit the following:
- 1) Intake Form or Fillable Intake Form
Please fill this out completely. Incomplete forms will not be processed.
- 2) Legal Representative Agreement
Please fill this form out only if this is your first time working with the HRC.
- 3) Client Affidavit/Statement
This may include either a detailed affidavit (working draft okay), I-589 narrative, credible fear statement, or any other document in which the client has made a statement regarding the history of abuse.
- 4) Client Consent Form available in English, Spanish and French.
This may be submitted later, but must be received before the evaluation takes place.
- 5) (If available) Any Medical Records relevant to the evaluation you are requesting
Submit completed intake materials to Katherine La Puente, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Intake packets may also be faxed to 212.226.6991. For questions call 212.992.6132.
You should receive a message confirming that we have received intake documents. If you do not hear from us within a week of submission, please contact us.
HealthRight’s HRC charges referring legal representatives a coordination fee that covers the administrative costs associated with running our program. Coordination fees are not remuneration for the health professionals in our network, who provide evaluations on a volunteer basis.
Following initial screening of intake materials, HealthRight uses a sliding scale to determine the per-evaluation fee and provides a fee agreement for referring legal representatives to sign in order to complete the intake process. The fee is charged only if we are successful in scheduling an evaluation, at which point we will send an invoice and the fee will be due within 4 weeks of receipt. If for any reason the evaluation does not go forward and cannot be rescheduled, the invoice would be rescinded (or the fee refunded if it has already been paid). HealthRight does not accept additional payment to guarantee or accelerate scheduling of an evaluation.
For more information, you may speak with one of the HRC staff.
Requesting Telephonic Testimony
If a volunteer clinician is requested to testify, the HRC will ask him/her to be available for telephonic testimony during a time window, no longer than an hour, on the day of the hearing. Please give us as much advance notice as possible so that the volunteer can try to accommodate your request, and no less than two weeks. The legal representative should make arrangements with the court to ensure telephonic testimony of the expert witness will be permitted.
HealthRight requires that attorneys prepare clinicians for testimony in advance of the hearing. Once our volunteer has confirmed their availability, please contact our volunteer within a reasonable period (at least 7-14 days) in advance of the hearing in order to arrange a time to prepare him/her for testimony. If the legal representative fails to provide preparation within a reasonable period, the HRC will advise the volunteer that s/he may choose not to answer the phone in the event the court calls him/her for testimony.
If the court decides to waive the phone testimony on the day of the hearing, the legal representative should immediately let the volunteer know, so that s/he is not left waiting by the phone.