D.C. forensic psychiatric and forensic psychological assessments

Forensic Psychiatry & Psychology Evaluations & Expert Witness Services

Experts in forensic psychiatry and forensic psychology, forensic psychiatrist Ryan Shugarman, M.D. and forensic psychologist Shilpa Krishnan, Ph.D. have been performing high quality forensic psychiatric and psychological assessments since 2009 and 2013, respectively. Both providers have a wealth of experience in conducting evaluations, preparing reports, testifying as an expert witness, teaching, and performing clinical work.

Drs. Shugarman and Krishnan are presently available for consultation throughout the United States for civil, administrative, and criminal matters. Subject matters include a variety of mental health-related issues, state of mind, capacity, fitness for duty, disability, psychological harm, and malpractice, amongst others.

Services offered include performing independent medical examinations (IME’s), conducting psychological testing (Dr. Krishnan only), assisting in a consulting capacity, preparing expert reports or rebuttal reports, and testifying at trial as an expert witness. Fee schedules are available upon request.

Civil Evaluations:

records review and expert witness services for mental health matters

Records review / Consultative services / Expert witness rebuttal reports

medical malpractice and psychiatric malpractice and psychological malpractice in Virginia, DC, and Maryland

Medical and psychological malpractice

breach of confidentiality

Breach of confidentiality

assessments and evaluations for substance-related issues in Northern VA, Washington DC, and Maryland

Assessments for substance-related issues

need for civil commitment and appropriateness for release from civil commitment

Need for, and appropriateness of, civil commitment

psychiatric independent medical examinations (IME) for divorce, retaliation, wrongful incarceration, discrimination, tort, disability, wrongful termination, harassment, FMLA, security clearance, worker's comp, workman's comp, psychological harm, discrimination, emotional distress

Expert opinions and independent medical evaluations (IMEs) for cases involving:

  • Disability (private polices, Federal Disability Retirement / OPM, SSI / SSDI)
  • Evaluation for impairment under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) of 1993
  • Workers’ compensation
  • United States military discharge status change and service-related disability assessments
  • Divorce and custody-related proceedings
  • Sexual harassment / Sexual assault
  • Discrimination
  • Retaliation, including “whistleblower” (qui tam) cases
  • Wrongful termination
  • Defamation
  • Emotional injury (psychological harm) due to intentional or unintentional cause, including physical injury or police brutality
  • Wrongful conviction / Wrongful incarceration
  • Other matters
testamentary capacity evaluations, including undue influence and insane delusions

Testamentary capacity, including issue of undue influence

competency to testify at trial and competency to be deposed

Competency to testify

guardianship evaluations, competency to make medical decisions and financial decisions

Competency to make medical and financial decisions / Need for guardianship

competency for electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)

Competency to consent to electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)

Medical board and attorney bar association reviews concerning physicians and attorneys

Medical board and attorney bar association reviews concerning physicians and attorneys

U.S. DEA reviews for physician misprescribing

United States Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) reviews for physician misprescribing

security clearance evaluations, mental health evaluations for security clearance, psychiatric assessments for security clearance

United States security clearance denial and revocation cases

fitness for duty evaluations (FFD) and return to work mental health assessments for physicians, attorney, pilots (HIMS evaluations), law enforcement officers, and other professions)

Fitness-for-duty assessments for:

  • Pilots and air traffic controllers, including assessments for commercial airlines and for the FAA / HIMS Program (Dr. Shugarman only)
  • Flight attendants
  • Physicians, medical residents, and medical students
  • Engineers, software developers, and I.T. specialists
  • Police officers, FBI applicants, U.S. Customs and Border Patrol Agents, and other law enforcement personnel
  • United States Foreign Service Officers
  • United States Peace Corps Volunteers
  • Other occupations
additional mental health evaluations in Washington, D.C., Virginia, and MD

Additional matters upon request


Criminal Evaluations:

prosecutorial and defense consultation

Prosecutorial and defense consultation

competency to stand trial, adjudicative capacity

Adjudicative competence / Competency to stand trial

(current and retrospective assessments) / Competency to proceed pro se / Jackson hearings / Competency to waive the insanity defense / Competency to be sentenced

criminal responsibility (insanity defense) evaluations for NGRI

Criminal responsibility / Insanity defense evaluations 


Bolton hearings in the District of Columbia (Washington D.C.)

District of Columbia Bolton hearings

unconditional release evaluations performed by a forensic psychiatrist or forensic psychologist for insanity (NGRI) acquitees

Appropriateness for unconditional release for insanity acquitees

aid-in-sentencing mental health and psychiatric assessments

Aid-in-sentencing assessments

death penalty mitigation

Death penalty mitigation

mental health evaluations for probation and prisoners

Psychiatric assessments for the Federal Bureau of Probation

additional mental health assessments performed by a forensic psychiatrist or forensic psychologist in VA, DC, and MD

Additional matters upon request

Other Evaluations:

mental health diagnosis clarification (diagnostic testing) and personality testing in Alexandria, VA

Diagnostic clarification / Assessment of personality

psychological testing and assessment by a licensed forensic psychologist in Virginia and Washington D.C.

Psychological testing, including assessment of cognitive and adaptive functioning (Dr. Krishnan only)

assessment for malingering

Evaluation for malingering

violence risk assessment

Violence risk assessment

stalking, stalking risk assessment

Stalking risk assessment (Dr. Shugarman only)

sex offender, sex offender risk assessment

Sex offender risk assessment (Dr. Krishnan only)

Our Experts:

Dr. Ryan Shugarman is a licensed clinical and forensic psychiatrist in Northern Virginia serving the Greater Washington D.C. area.

Ryan Shugarman, M.D.

Board-Certified General and Forensic Psychiatrist


Dr. Shugarman is a board-certified general and forensic psychiatrist who established his practice in 2010. He is available for forensic psychiatric consulting, psychiatric assessments and IME evaluations, and expert witness services for civil, administrative, and criminal matters involving adults. For information about his clinical work, please refer to his Provider page.

After receiving his bachelor’s degree in psychology from Cornell University, Dr. Shugarman earned his medical degree from the University of Maryland School of Medicine. He then completed a general psychiatry residency and forensic psychiatry fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine/Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic.

Dr. Shugarman is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) and a member of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law (AAPL) and the American Medical Association (AMA). He is an instructor with Saint Elizabeths Hospital’s forensic psychiatry fellowship program and a former Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry with Georgetown University Hospital. For his teaching work as a forensic psychiatrist, Dr. Shugarman received the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law’s “Award for Outstanding Teaching in a Forensic Fellowship Program.” Dr. Shugarman has presented at both national and regional conferences on a variety of topics.

Retained by both plaintiff and defense counsels, Dr. Shugarman has testified in various jurisdictions (including federal court) for civil, administrative, and criminal matters. In addition to conducting assessments for individuals, companies, hospital systems, and boards of medicine, Dr. Shugarman performs fitness for duty and security clearance evaluations, including for several federal agencies.

Dr. Shilpa Krishnan is a licensed clinical and forensic psychologist in Northern Virginia serving the Greater Washington D.C. area.

Shilpa Krishnan, Ph.D.

Licensed Clinical and Forensic Psychologist


Dr. Krishnan is a licensed clinical and forensic psychologist. She conducts forensic psychological evaluations and provides consultation and expert witness services for civil, administrative, and criminal matters involving psychological issues.

After receiving her master’s degree in forensic psychology from John Jay College of Criminal Justice, Dr. Krishnan earned her doctoral degree in clinical psychology from George Mason University in 2012. Next, she completed an APA-accredited, pre-doctoral internship at NYU School of Medicine/Bellevue Hospital Center, followed by a postdoctoral residency in forensic psychology at Saint Elizabeths Hospital in Washington, D.C.

Dr. Krishnan is a faculty member and instructor for the Saint Elizabeths Hospital’s psychology pre-doctoral internship, externship, and postdoctoral residency programs, as well as the hospital’s forensic psychiatry fellowship program. In addition to serving as a research consultant for George Mason University, Dr. Krishnan has previously taught undergraduate forensic psychology courses at George Mason University and Marymount University. She has also presented at both national and international conferences on a variety of forensic psychological topics such as violence risk assessment and psychopathy.

Dr. Krishnan has provided expert witness testimony in several jurisdictions and serves as a qualified examiner through the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (DBHDS) Office of Forensic Services. Additionally, she serves as the Deputy Director of the Forensic Services Division for the District of Columbia Department of Behavioral Health. In this capacity, she assists in the direction and administration of mental health services for persons involved with the criminal justice system, helps to develop policy, and performs court-ordered forensic psychological assessments.

Interested in retaining our services?

Please call us at (703) 596-1024 or complete our contact form.