Posted On: February 1, 2012 by Parr Richey Obremskey Frandsen & Patterson

Indiana Supreme Court Holds Psychologist Allowed to Testify as to Cause of Brain Injury in Elkhart County, Indiana Truck Accident Case

In Bennett v. Richmond (No. 20S03-1105-CV-293), the Indiana Supreme Court held the trial court was correct in allowing a psychologist to testify that the plaintiff in a Elkhart County, Indiana truck accident case had a brain injury that was caused by the crash. The Court explains, in Bennett, the plaintiff underwent a neuropsychological evaluation with Dr. Sheridan McCabe, a psychologist. Plaintiff had been suffering from headaches and memory loss sinice the crash, but had not been diagnosed with a brain injury.

Dr. McCabe reviewed plaintiff's medical records and deposition, interviewed plaintiff and his wife, and administered a "battery" of neuropsychological tests to plaintiff. After which, Dr. McCabe testified that plaintiff had "experienced a traumatic brain injury in the accident."

In reaching its holding that it was appropriate for Dr. McCabe to testify plaintiff had suffered a traumatic brain injury caused by the crash, the Indiana Supreme Court reasoned that psychologists and neuropsychologists may provide such testimony if they are qualified under Indiana Evidence Rule 702 (qualified based on certain knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education).