Vocational Experts (VEs) are often needed in a variety of cases. In cases involving a severe physical injury, a vocational expert may be necessary to determine the types of work in which an injured person may engage. If the person can no longer engage in the type of work previously undertaken, and instead can only engage in the types of work that offer lower pay, an earnings loss calculation may be necessary.
Additionally, divorce and cases involving spousal support can also require the experience and testimony of a vocational expert. These matters often concern matters such as a spouse’s qualifications to re-enter the workforce and related job prospects, and, in some cases, whether a spouse may even have the capability to re-enter the workforce due to lack of marketable skills or physical disability.
The Elements and Aspects Typically Considered by Vocational Experts
Vocational experts have expertise in identifying a person’s work ability and earning capacity. When a person has a work history, the vocational expert can use the person’s past work experience as a means to gauge future work and earnings.
When a person does not have a work history (such as a child or student who has not established themselves vocationally) a VE may use the person’s educational background and/or intellectual functioning to give parameters as to what future work the person could have done if the person’s work potential was not interrupted by their impairment, catastrophic injury or untimely death.
Determining Job Availability
Determining a person’s vocational ability is only one task for a vocational expert. A related and critical aspect is analyzing the job market and prospects for a person once a vocational ability assessment has been made. For example, it does not matter if a person is highly competent in an area if there are no job opportunities for that area.
Vocational experts often assist legal counsel by providing a comprehensive analysis of the job market in a specified geographic area based upon the vocational assessment, gender, education, age, and other factors of an individual. Frequently, in preparing a vocational assessment, local and national data bases are used, as well as a variety of governmental and non-governmental resources, such as labor force surveys, and information from The Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Following this research, a vocational expert can then provide an analysis and considered opinion regarding the vocational outlook for an individual based upon this information, which can include a comparison, in the case of an injury, between the expected earnings prior to the injury and the expected earnings following the injury.
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1/86 – Present Dr. Kenneth J. Manges & Associates, Cincinnati, Ohio. Administrative Director, Supervising
Consultation: Patient consultation with other providers. Litigation consultation with attorneys regarding complex civil litigation, employment and issues, professional malpractice, work place injury, loss of life, as well as, psychological trauma and vocational wage loss. Public service announcements regarding psychological and forensic issues.
Evaluations for: Psychological and vocational issues for self referrals (adults and children), as well as public, non-profit and private entities. Child evaluations for ADHD, sexual trauma and autism syndrome. Criminal defense evaluations including competency and NGRI. Civil forensic examinations including competency, harassment, untoward influence and grief. Parenting evaluations of competency and visitation. Fitness for duty and psychological assessment. IME exams regarding psychological issues due to alleged work injuries for employers and claimant attorneys. Vocational analysis for social security applications. Posttraumatic Stress and related psychological issues related to war veterans, as well as, forensic and non-forensic emotional trauma referrals. Substance abuse evaluations and treatment. Psychological evaluations for implant of medical devices.
Treatment: Individual and group psychotherapy for emotional issues. Treatment for work stress, job loss and career transition.
9/78 - 12/85 Counseling and Communications Center, Charleston, West Virginia
Administrative Director. Supervising Psychologist. Psychological and psycho-educational evaluator. Family and marital therapist. Inpatient consultation with physicians, psychiatrists and patients. Forensic criminal consultations and examinations. Worker’s Compensation Evaluations and Disability Evaluations.
8/77 – 8/78 Bath – Brunswick Mental Health Center, Bath, Maine
Consultation and Education Program Director. School Psychological Services Program Director. Contract negotiations. Supervisor of Ph.D. psychologists and psychological testing.
9/74 – 8/77 Wheeler Clinic, Plainville, Connecticut
Staff Psychologist. Psychological and psycho –educational evaluator. Individual and group psychotherapy. Family diagnostics and family therapy. Consultation with referral sources.
8/72 – 8/74 Great Oaks Retardation Center, Silver Springs, Maryland (part time pre-doctoral externship)
Staff psychologist for inpatients. Consultant to outpatient facilities for the Mentally Handicapped. Staff training in behavioral techniques. Research on doctoral dissertation.
9/75 – 6-77 Bristol Hospital, Bristol, Connecticut
Family Therapy internship program through Ackerman Institute of New York. Weekly group supervision of ongoing cases Monthly seminars. Quarterly presentations of issues in family therapy.
9/71 – 8/72 Hackensack Rehabilitation Center, Hackensack, New Jersey
Psychometric and counseling internship program in conjunction with Brooklyn College Supervisor. Psychological evaluations and counseling under Ph.D. supervision. Weekly review of test findings. Monthly presentation of cases.
12/69 – 12/70 Kings County Hospital, Downstate Medical Center, Brooklyn, New York
Psychometric evaluations with inpatients. Weekly review of test findings. Participation in Grand Rounds. Supervised inpatient treatment.
10/69 – 9/70 Family Court Mental Health Clinic, Westbury, New York
Counseling with court-referred adolescents. Weekly counseling sessions with court referrals. Biweekly
Good Samaritan Hospital
Mercy Hospital (Mount Airy and Western Hills)
Test development contributions
Manges-Garmize Behavioral Assessment Scale.
Manges, K. and Garmize, L. Copyright, Great Oaks Center, 1973.
Preliminary Diagnostic Questionnaire.
Copyright, Moriarity, J. (Dr. Manges was the editor & project supervisor)
Professional Participation: Book, Journal and University Affiliation
Book Contributions: Working in the Community.
Co-Author, Eighth Annual Institute of Rehabilitation Issues, 1979.
Contributing editor, Journal of Forensic Vocational Assessment