Allegations of child sexual abuse in family court cases : a qualitative analysis of psychiatric evidence

Black, Fiona, Schweitzer, Robert D., & Varghese, Frank T. (2012) Allegations of child sexual abuse in family court cases : a qualitative analysis of psychiatric evidence. Psychiatry, Psychology and Law, 19(4), pp. 482-496.

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Allegations of child sexual abuse in Family Court cases have gained increasing attention. The study investigates factors involved in Family Court cases involving allegations of child sexual abuse. A qualitative methodology was employed to examine Records of Judgement and Psychiatric Reports for 20 cases distilled from the data corpus of 102 cases. A seven-stage methodology was developed utilising a thematic analysis process informed by principles of grounded theory and phenomenology. The explication of eight thematic clusters was undertaken. The findings point to complex issues and dynamics in which child sexual abuse allegations have been raised. The alleging parent’s allegations of sexual abuse against their ex-partner may be: the expression of unconscious deep fears for their children’s welfare, or an action to meet their needs for personal affirmation in the context of the painful upheaval of a relationship break-up. Implications of the findings are discussed.

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2 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 55457
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: sexual abuse allegations, false allegations, psychiatric evidence, Family Court, , custody disputes, expert testimony
DOI: 10.1080/13218719.2011.613905
ISSN: 1934-1687
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100) > Forensic Psychology (170104)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Psychology & Counselling
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2012
Deposited On: 11 Dec 2012 01:21
Last Modified: 12 Dec 2012 17:44

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