Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

The Effects of the Justice System on the Mental Health of Plaintiffs and Defendants

Version 1 : Received: 22 October 2019 / Approved: 23 October 2019 / Online: 23 October 2019 (04:19:58 CEST)

How to cite: Clemente, M.; Padilla-Racero, D. The Effects of the Justice System on the Mental Health of Plaintiffs and Defendants. Preprints 2019, 2019100264 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201910.0264.v1). Clemente, M.; Padilla-Racero, D. The Effects of the Justice System on the Mental Health of Plaintiffs and Defendants. Preprints 2019, 2019100264 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201910.0264.v1).

Abstract

This study aimed to assess the psychological effects of being processed by the justice system, either as a plaintiff or as a defendant. The sample consisted of 360 subjects, 32.8% defendants and 52.2% plaintiffs, residents in the Autonomous Community of Galicia (NW Spain). A lot of psychological test were administered. The results indicated significant differences between plaintiffs and defendants. The former were more pessimistic about the future, used poor strategies for protecting health, and had less empathy. In contrast, defendants had a more negative outlook on life, and in general more psychosomatic symptomology. Thus, both defendants and plaintiffs suffered health problems. Moreover, the group with the longest exposure to litigation had the worst deteriorated health. In conclusion, defendants were more pessimistic about the future, used poor strategies for protecting their own health, and showed less empathy. Likewise, plaintiffs had a more negative outlook on life, and on the whole presented more psychosomatic symptomology. Thus, both defendants and plaintiffs presented health problems. Moreover, the comparison between litigants and non-litigants showed health was more deteriorated in the former, but only in a few specific variables.

Subject Areas

defendant; legal psychology; litigation; mental health; plaintiff; user of the justice system

Comments (0)

We encourage comments and feedback from a broad range of readers. See criteria for comments and our diversity statement.

Leave a public comment
Send a private comment to the author(s)
Views 0
Downloads 0
Comments 0
Metrics 0


×
Alerts
Notify me about updates to this article or when a peer-reviewed version is published.