Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Rating the psychologist evaluator

The Yelp reviews of Kenneth B. Perlmutter are terrible. He has the lowest possible rating, one star. What I did not notice at first is that there are a bunch of other one-star ratings that do not show because they have been filtered or removed. There are no ratings higher than one star. Here are the filtered ratings.

Alyssa C. writes:
I can't really give away any personal information about myself, but I am a teenager and I can say this: Dr. Perlmutter ruined my life. When I was in first grade, Dr. Perlmutter made a recommendation to the court that it was in my best interests to switch custody to my father. I had been living with my mother since birth. Today, I live with my father and am currently dealing with depression, suicidal thoughts, and trauma, on top of being a teenager and all the troubles that come with that. My mom isn't a bad person; she doesn't do drugs, doesn't drink, doesn't smoke, doesn't have a criminal record, never abandoned or abused her kids, physically or emotionally, and is a wonderful and loving mother. My father, on the other hand, I can't say is even close to this. He is in-compassionate, has no love for children or women, freely insults people, is hypocritical, and criticizes those less fortunate than him. He is also an alcoholic and frequents the bars, has been arrested, and is currently cheating on his wife. And it disgusts me. Might I add my mother Asian, and my father White.
This is my world, my living hell, and it's all thanks to Dr. Perlmutter. His words alone gave me this burden. If you actually love your children, unlike my father, and don't want them to face depression and lose their path in life, like I did, then don't go to Dr. Perlmutter. If someone refers you to him, stop and think about your child. If you don't care about your child, and only seek a diagnosis based on sexist and racial biase, go ahead and go to Dr. Perlmutter. And believe me, I am doing this of my own free will. I just hope to save other kids from this terrible nightmare, and to give them a chance to love and be loved.
Martin B. writes:
I agree with the other reviews posted. He is manipulative and power hungry. He does not consider children at all, intimidating them throughout "his process." He has absolutely no understanding of the affects alcoholism has on a family (shameful for a psychologist!), and minimizes the damage done by a parent out of control abusing alcohol and drugs. To say he needs education on the subject is an understatement. His poorly written, contradictory report included mistakes, inaccuracies, and downright lies that he drummed up to meet his very subjective "objective." He is in this to churn fees.
and this:
Agreed. Probably the most unethical person I have encountered through the whole divorce procedure. His report was a form letter which arrived months late and was thousands over budget. His recommendation referred us to his co-worker "Dr Sullivan". Dr Sullivan milked the case for a year, tried to get his wife on the payroll, then referred us back to Perl for another evaluation! By then the wonky tower of arrogance had already collected money from the ex for "independent psychotherapy". The really sad part is how they hurt the children. If you're just getting started, go somewhere else. If the same thing happened to you and you're interested in pursuing licensing complaints against Dr. S or Dr P, please call me at 650 305-0113.
and this:
This man is incredibly unprofessional and rude. We ended up with an inaccurate report that was thousands of dollars over budget and months late. In comparing the "evaluation" with others from his office, similarities were obvious. Perlmutter sold us a form letter. The good doctor ordered forced psychotherapy and "treatment" from his associate, Dr. Sullivan. Dr. Sullian then milked us for thousands more before recommending we go back to Perlmutter for another round. By that time, Perlmutter had violated professional ethics by "performing individual psychotherapy" and starting a second evaluation without a signed agreement. The court then discarded Perlmutter's recommendation and started fresh. I wish I could say we were only robbed of cash. Perlmutter's greed and sloppy work really hurt our children.

There is some good news: There are intelligent, professional evaluators in the valley. Michael Kerner is one.

My advice: Shop around for someone other than Perlmutter. Children go through enough grief in a divorce. Don't let this man hurt your children.
Melanie J. writes:
Dr. Perlmutter should be avoided at all costs to you and your children!

My youngest child will turn 18 this week so now I'll finally be free of his complete lack of compassion and professional ability to help families in crisis heal.

My husband wanted out of the marriage, we developed a parenting plan that we both agreed to and were sent to Dr. Perlmutter to mediate some of the few points we had not yet resolved.

We didn't hate each other upon entering his office, but we certainly left his office with a new loathing for each other. His questioning of how we had come to our agreement proved that he was committed to having us accept HIS very unreasonable and unworkable policies for our children, who were only 3 and 5 years old at the time.

Here is just one example -- as parents we agreed to dividing Christmas like this: one year I would have the children through Christmas Eve until 8 PM, I'd then take them to their father's house, and he'd have them through New Year's Eve. The next year we would reverse this schedule.

Dr. Perlmutter wouldn't have it. He insisted that we exchange the children at noon on Christmas. What did this accomplish? That every Christmas the kids woke up in one parent's home, we had to rush to open presents and eat our holiday meal, then pack them up and drive to the other parent's home who then had to re-create Christmas that afternoon at their home.

I'm a religious person. I wanted to attend services on Christmas Eve with my children after we had opened presents every other year. Their dad had agreed, but not Dr. Perlmutter. Why on earth would he object to what we had already agreed to and thought was best for our children?

This is just one of dozens of ways in which he fanned the flames of discord in our divorce and parenting plan.

And if I ever meet him in person again I will tell him to his face that I've never met a less compassionate person! He is paid to allegedly ensure that children's interests come first, rather he is allowed a forum for infinite malice and for bloating his own ego.

Beg your attorneys to never send you or your worst enemy to Ken Perlmutter in Palo Alto!
Elizabeth F. writes:
This man is dangerous! Please beware! He has built himself up to be the "authority" of custody evaluations, and has deceived many people into thinking that he is THE custody evaluator. I would agree that he is biased, and more than arrogant! He is supposed to be a psychologist, but spends most of his time ruining families! Find someone else to do your evaluation.... PLEASE! Better yet... find another alternative to courts, evaluations, and all of that and work this out on your own. These people don't give a damn about you or your family -- they all want a "piece of the pie."
I added my own:
Ken Perlmutter is a horrible child custody evaluator. He charged me $20,000 to do an evaluation, and he recommended that my ex-wife get sole legal and physical custody and that I be reduced to two hours of supervised visitation per month. This was after four years of successful joint custody in which there was not a single allegation of abuse, neglect, domestic violence, drug use, harm to the kids, or anything like that. His main explanation was that my ex-wife had brought unfounded charges of emotional abuse, and he thought that our kids might be upset if I told them the truth. For more info, google his name with "angry dad".
Wow. This guy is a menace. His court testimony should be public so everyone can see how bad he is.


Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

I noticed somebody said to use Dr. Kerner. I am familiar with Dr. Kerner's work in multiple cases, and intimately familiar with his work on two cases (where I have seen and been part of the filings, etc.). His work is beyond terrible, it is fraudulent in many cases. He has been sued in small claims for his work more than once. It appears that he also has become increasingly reckless as he gets older and more entrenched in the court system, that he feels invincible, and his work has become about favors, power, etc., and never about the children's interest. He is violating so many rules in one particular case, and has been so retaliatory (he gets a TRO on people who file legal challenges to his work, or at the very least tells the judge he and his staff is afraid) that the time may have finally come that the court can no longer protect him. There are some interesting legal challenges going on this summer with his work. The media has also been alerted to Dr. Kerner, as well as some local authority figures. He is starting to get some big eyes looking over his shoulder. Yes, you can win with him as your evaluator- I have looked at who wins and who loses in his evaluations, and there is a formula for it, but I won't give it out.

Anonymous said...

Regarding the post about Dr. Kerner, please provide some facts or examples. As written, it is strictly an opinion and bears no weight. Describe the "broken rules" or "fraud." From what I've heard and read of Dr. Kerner he is a solid professional, very respected in his field, and very un-biased. I've never seen or heard any proof to the contrary, just biased opinions.

George said...

Kerner has a reputation of being one of the better child custody evaluators, but he was the subject of a negative 1996 newspaper article and has some bad Yelp reviews. I have no idea about the above allegations.

Anonymous said...

To the person who is asking me to be more specific about Kerner. Recently, a judge actually threw out Kerner's work and ordered a re-evaluation. DO you have any idea how rare this is? For a judge to agree it was that poorly done? It is exceedingly rare! In another case, and this one is the most egregious I have ever seen - downright criminal - he performed a child custody evaluation without telling the woman that he had been the counselor for her ex-husband and his first wife (she has the documentation to prove it. Then he turned what was supposed to be a move-away evaluation into an immediate custody order without telling the parties, removing custody from the mother and giving it to the father. The father has been jailed twice for domestic violence, two times a SWAT team came to the house when the father threatened the family with his assault rifle, and once the father made it into the newspaper for refusing medical treatment after their 9-month old fell down a flight of stairs and was injured. The father, an attorney himself, has been discipline by the State Bar in two states. He also violated probation. Mother has a perfect record - a highly educated woman who has no history of drinking, drugs or violence. When she filed a formal grievance against Kerner(a 2-inch thick binder), the next day kerner obtained a TRO against her based on nothing but his "reputation." It was eventually dropped for lack of evidence, but unfortunately is still on her record (which of course he knew just how much that would hurt her career). When she filed her properly prepared response using a process server, he called the police and said she violated her TRO (the police informed him it was not a violation, but he still tells the judge that she violated the TRO). I have been intimately involved in this case, I see all the docs, so I know it to be true.

Mike said...

Come on guys, ther eis nothign more polarizing that divorce issues. Been there dome that. Dr. Kerner is a solid professional. He listens really well and can see through cr@p really fast. He has been douign this a very long time and is HIGHLY regarded by the courts. People use him because Judges hang their hats on his opinions. If you are going badmouth a professional like this and be even slightly credible, you are going to need to give details. I would be astonished if he ever did anythign that he did not consider to be in the best interests of the kids.

Just remember, no one in the system gives a damn about you as parents. You (we, I) blew it. We had our chance and failed. Do not expect them to put your needs or concerns above that of your children, and rightly so.

Dad's are able to get a fair shake these IF they know what they are doing (educate yourselves) and make real attempts to put the kids first and muzzle the fighting dogs.

Anonymous said...

Kerner does in fact favor the client with the attorney most closely aligned with himself. His work is so poor that in many cases both sides had more than enough evidence to have him thrown off the case. He confines his statements in writing to subjective analysis of events only he witnessed. He makes up quotes. He pushes people into doing business with his friends, threatening to label them as 'uncooperative' if they refuse. He then uses his friends to back his subjective claims.

Each recommendation he makes includes a recommendation that he do another evaluation in 6 - 24 months.

He does not do his homework.

He does favor violent parents over peaceful ones if it is in his best interest to do so.

If you are fighting his recommendations, you will find inconsistencies aplenty. If he has defrauded you, turn him in with as much considered objective evidence as you can. Eventually it all adds up, so even if you do not prevail, it becomes part of the record.

Anonymous said...

Can anyone post case numbers or other evidence that can be used to start building a case against this creep?

Anonymous said...

I am a family attorney in San Jose and have used many custody evaluators. If you took a poll of attorneys of the best custody evaluators in the South Bay area, Dr. Kerner would be at the top of almost anyone's list. Many of the negative comments online about Dr. Kerner and some of the other custody evaluators are merely a product of their job. In just about every custody evaluation, one, if not both parties are unhappy with the recommendation. After seeing this blog and some others I felt the need to respond to some of the negative comments, which are factually inaccurate.

George said...

Yes, Kerner has a better reputation among attorneys. But I believe in holding these guys accountable for what they say in court.

Anonymous said...

Custody Evaluators:

I have had many experiences with custody evaluators through my own divorce and some of my neighbors divorces. We all came to the conclusion (after using a combined 4 evaluators/child experts that Kerner was the best. While he is more expensive than some of the other child psychologists, his clout with the Santa Clara judges makes it worth it. Unfortunately I did not have the opportunity to use him but 3 of my friends who used him all thought he was reasonable, professional, and actually cared about their kids.

Anonymous said...

I am so glad the word is out online about Kenneth Perlmutter, PhD, in Palo Alto, CA. He is the most despicable person I have ever met and should have had his license taken away long ago for prejudicial incompetence! I would have file a complaint against him, but I was too emotional and angry and I though no one would take me seriously. Now I see that I was not alone!! If he likes you (and you kiss his egotistical a**), you are all set, but if he doesn't like you- look out- because he will get even in his report to the Court- by making all kinds of judgmental and presumptive conclusions about you! More than 12 years ago, he was appointed by the court to write a recommendation about custody of my young daughters... He recommended that my ex get custody, but also failed to mention in the report that he had gotten a 17 year old girl pregnant when he was 33 years old- a relevant negative that was not mentioned, while all kinds of negative statements were made about me- mostly because I did not give him a "good enough reason" for divorcing my ex!! He was insulting and belittling and infuriating... He seems to have a big problem with confident, successful women who believe they deserve and will win custody. HE will be GOD in deciding what's "best" for your children, and no one will tell him who to favor- so don't even try! If you have any other choice in a custody evaluation- take it! He is the stuff nightmares are made of!!!!!

Anonymous said...

there needds to be a class action sure against Ken Perlmutter You al need to get together file class action suit

Anonymous said...

Dr. Ken B Perlmutter PhD. of Palo Alto is a dangerous pedophile who should be in prison, and definitely not allowed to be alone with young boys.

Anonymous said...

Wish I had read this a little sooner.

When Perlmutter was not drunk, he was aggressive, abusive, and threatening. When he was drunk, which was often, he was far worse.

Piece of advice. Do not use Perlmutter as your evaluator.