Expert Psychiatrist and Trial Lawyer, Dr. Ari Kiev, Dies

Yesterday I learned of the death of Ari Kiev, M.D.  See The New York Times obituary here.

    Dr. Kiev was a noted psychiatrist studying  Wall Street traders and athletes and heading suicide prevention clinics.  His recent focus has been on advising stock traders.  See  However, I came to know Dr. Kiev as an expert witness on and off the witness stand.

I tried a case against the State of New York in the Court of Claims with Dr. Kiev as our expert medical witness.  He did an excellent job on the stand.  He was in total command.   I also hired him as our expert on a couple of other cases which were settled before trial. 

What is particularly remarkable about Dr. Kiev is that during the late half of a distinguished medical career, he became a trial lawyer.  He went to New York Law School at night.  He graduated, and he was admitted to practice.  He was burning to try cases, and he wanted to be the next great trial lawyer.  He became “of counsel” to a personal injury firm, and he tried some cases for them.  I recall him asking me for cases to try. 

I believe that he moved away from trial practice and returned to medicine full-time when he saw that it was a bit hard to become a great trial lawyer at his late stage in life.  He left the practice of law since he was only interested in trying cases, and he had no interest in pursuing “office” law, such as real estate and commercial transactions. 

Dr. Kiev was a colorful denizen of the personal injury world, and he will be missed.

Mark E. Seitelman, 12/1/09,


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