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Henry Dlugacz




Tel: 212-277-5890

Henry Dlugacz

Henry Dlugacz joined the firm as a partner in 2009. His practice focuses on mental health-related matters, with a particular emphasis on the monitoring and mediation of complex class action lawsuits involving correctional systems of treatment, forensic hospitals, reentry planning, and community-based systems.


He has extensive experience representing petitioners and respondents in mental health matters such as civil retentions, medication-over-objection hearings, and guardianship proceedings, and in representing hospitals in the negotiation of clinical trial, residency training and other affiliation agreements. He is appointed by courts as a court evaluator in guardianship proceedings. Also a licensed social worker, he has wide-ranging clinical and administrative experience in the development, supervision and provision of correctional mental health care systems of care. 


A founding co-chair of the New York State Bar Association’s Mental Health Committee, Mr. Dlugacz has also served as a consultant to numerous national and international organizations seeking to improve the treatment of people with mental disabilities, particularly those who become entangled in the criminal justice system.  The author of numerous publications, he is active nationally and internationally in training the next generation of attorneys, physicians and mental health professionals.


Professional Activities

Mediator, United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, Mediation and Arbitration Panel (2000-2018)

Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science, New York Medical College (1997-present)

Court Evaluator and Guardian, New York State (1997-present)

Adjunct Professor of Law, New York Law School (2006-2014)

Expert Consultant, Mentally Disordered Offenders, Mental Disabilities Rights International/American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative (2012)

Founding Co-Chair, New York State Bar Association’s Healthcare Law Section, Committee on Mental Health Issues (2002-2008)

Adjunct Professor of Law, St. John’s University School of Law (2001-2006)

European Court of Human Rights/ Mental Disability Advocacy Center/ Council of Europe, Strasbourg, France, Expert Trainer (2005)

New York Law School, under grant from U.S. Department of State co-developed and taught course for Nicaraguan judges, lawyers, physicians and advocates (2003-2004)

PricewaterhouseCoopers, Expert inspector of correctional facilities, under contract with Department of Justice, Marshall Service and Immigration and Naturalization Service (2001-2002)

Council of State Governments, Expert consultant to Consensus Project Correctional workgroup (2001-2002)

Saint Vincent's Hospital Correctional Health Program, Director of Mental Health Services, New York Directed and developed all aspects of multi-site accredited correctional mental health program (1988-1997)



New York Law School (J.D. cum laude 1991), Notes & Comments Editor, Human Rights Journal


Hunter College School of Social Work (M.S.W. 1981)


Queens College (B.A. cum laude 1979)



Mental Health



Alternative Dispute Resolution

International Human Rights

Bar Admissions 

New York

Representative Cases
Coleman v. Newsom, 912 F. Supp. 1282 (E.D. Cal. 1995), United States District Court for the Eastern District of California, Expert member of special master's monitoring panel in remedial phase of class-action lawsuit involving mental health care for entire State of California correctional system (2007-present)


Brad H. et al. v. City of New York et al., 117882/99, Supreme Court, State of New York, One of two Court-appointed Compliance Monitors in remedial phase of class action lawsuit involving reentry planning for inmates with mental illness discharged from New York City Correctional  system (2003-present)

Assistant Monitor, Rasho et al. vs. Walker et al. Case No. 07-1298 (2014-2016)

Bravo et al. v. Board of County Commissioners for the County of Doña Ana et al., No. 08-CV-10  Untied States District Court for the District of New Mexico, Expert consultant for plaintiffs in class-action lawsuit alleging constitutional and statutory violations related to jail-based mental health care and reentry practices (2007-2010)


Hadix v. Caruso, No. 4:92-CV-00110-RAE, United States District Court for the Western District of Michigan, Consultant to the Office of the Independent Medical Monitor, Monitoring of mental health aspects of remedial phase of class action lawsuit involving portions of Michigan's correctional system (2007-2009)


Pierce County et al. v. State of Washington et al., 03-2-00918-8, Superior Court, Thurston County, Washington State, Successfully co-mediated settlement of complex class action lawsuit with multiple public and private parties involving funding, discharge planning, and community mental health treatment issues (2005-2006)


Rust et al. v. Western State Hospital et al., C00-5749, United States District Court for the Western District of Washington, Lead expert for plaintiff class and one of two Court-appointed monitors in remedial phase of class-action litigation involving Washington State's forensic hospital (2001-2005)


Duran et al. v. King et al., 77-721, United States District Court for the District of New Mexico. Lead Court-appointed expert and mediator in remedial phase of mental health portions of class action litigation involving entire New Mexico prison system. Successfully co-mediated termination of case (1993-2000)





"Super Lawyer" 2012-2020, New York City Metro under Health Law category




H. A. Dlugacz, Effective Non-Litigation Advocacy for Incarcerated Clients with Mental Disabilities in Representing People with Mental Disabilities: A Practical Guide (E. Kelley Ed., 2018).

H. A. Dlugacz & L. Droubi,The Reach and Limitation of the ADA and its Integration Mandate: Potential Implications for the Successful Reentry of Individuals with Mental Disabilities in a Correctional Population, 35 Behav. Sci. & L. 135 (2017).


H. A. Dlugacz, Community Reentry in Oxford Textbook of Correctional Psychiatry (R. Trestman, J. Metzner, K. Appelbaum Eds., 2015).


H. A. Dlugacz, Ed., Re-Entry Planning for Offenders with Mental Disorders: Policy and Practice in Civic Research Institute (vol. 2 2015).


H. A. Dlugacz, Correctional Mental Health in the United States in International Journal of Prisoner Health (vol. 10 2014).


H. A. Dlugacz, J. Low, C. Wimmer & L. Knox, Ethical Issues in Correctional Psychiatry in the United States in Ethical Issues in Prison Psychiatry (N. Konrad, B. Vollm, D.N. Weisstub Eds., vol. 46 2013).


H. A. Dlugacz & C. Wimmer, The Legal Aspects of Administering Antipsychotic Medications to Jail and Prison Inmates in International Journal of Law and Psychiatry (2013).


H. A. Dlugacz & C. Wimmer, The Ethics of Representing Clients With Limited Competency in Guardianship Proceedings, 4 St. Louis U. J. Pub. Health L. & Pol'y 331 (2011).


H. A. Dlugacz, Ed., Re-Entry Planning for Offenders with Mental Disorders: Policy & Practice in Civic Research Institute (2010).


E. Roskes, C. Cooksey, S. Lipford & H. Dlugacz,The Criminal Justice System and Offenders Placed in an Outpatient Setting in Handbook of Correctional Mental Health (C.L. Scott Ed., 2d ed. 2010).


H. A. Dlugacz & E. Roskes, Clinically Oriented Reentry Planning in Correctional Settings in Handbook of Correctional Mental Health (C.L. Scott Ed., 2d ed. 2010).


M. L. Perlin & H. A. Dlugacz, It’s Doom Alone That Counts: Can International Human Rights Law Be An Effective Source of Rights in Correctional Conditions Litigation?, 27 Behav. Sci. L. 675-94 (2009).


H. A. Dlugacz, Out-Patient Commitment: Some Thoughts on Promoting a Meaningful Dialogue, 53 N.Y. L. Sch. L. Rev. 79 (2009)..


M. L. Perlin & H. A. Dlugacz, Mental Health Issues in Jails & Prisons (Carolina Academic Press 2008).


M. Perlin, P. Champine, H. A. Dlugacz & M. Connell, Competence in Criminal & Civil Law: From Legal Theory to Clinical Applications  (John Wiley 2008).


H. A. Dlugacz & J. Y. Low, Liability Management and the Correctional Psychiatrist: A Review of Key Considerations in Correctional Psychiatry: Practice Guidelines and Strategies (O. J. Thienhaus & M. Piasecki, Eds. Civic Research Institute, 2007).


H. A. Dlugacz, N. Broner & S. S. Lamon, A Continuum of Care for Adults with Mental Illness Leaving Jail & Prison: A Review of Essential Reentry Elements in Correctional Psychiatry: Practice Guidelines and Strategies (O. J. Thienhaus & M. Piasecki, Eds., Civic Research Institute, 2007).


M. Perlin, K. Gould, Cohen, H. Dlugacz & R. Friedman, Lawyering Skills in the Representation of Persons with Mental Disabilities (Carolina Academic Press, 2006).


Special Editor, New York State Bar Association Health Law Journal, Special Issue on Mental Health (Spring 2006).

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