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Inventory of Legal Knowledge

Jeffrey E. Musick, PhD, ABPP, and Randy K. Otto, PhD, ABPP; Professional Manual by Randy K. Otto, PhD, ABPP, Jeffrey E. Musick, PhD, ABPP, and Christina B. Sherrod, PhD

Assesses response styles of defendants undergoing evaluations of adjudicative competence
Paper and pencil, E-Manual
Age range:
12 years to 79 years
15 minutes
Qualification level:
All qualifications for Level B plus an advanced professional degree that provides appropriate training in the administration and interpretation of psychological tests, or license or certification from an agency that requires appropriate training and experience in the ethical and competent use of psychological tests. Close

The ILK is designed to assist the forensic examiner in assessing response styles of defendants undergoing evaluations of adjudicative competence. The ILK is not a test of adjudicative competence; rather, it is a measure of a defendant’s approach to inquiries about his or her legal knowledge.

  • Written in simple language, the ILK contains 61 true-or-false items about the legal process.
  • Orally administered by an examiner in about 15 minutes, the ILK can be used anywhere—including jails and other secure facilities—and scored quickly.
  • To detect feigned deficits in legal knowledge, the ILK utilizes two strategies: one based on scores that are significantly lower than scores expected by chance, and a second based on scores that are significantly lower than those attained by relevant normative groups.
  • Honest-responding normative groups include adults acquitted by reason of insanity, adults with major mental illness, adults and adolescents not referred for competency evaluations, adult and adolescent defendants assessed to be competent to proceed, and adult and adolescent defendants adjudicated or assessed to be incompetent to proceed.
  • Reference data on adult defendants suspected of malingering, as well as on adults instructed to feign competence-related limitations, are included.
  • Item content includes charges, pleas, sanctions, defendants’ rights, and courtroom procedures, as well as the roles of the judge, prosecutor, defense attorney, and witnesses.
  • Cumulative percentiles are used to compare the ILK Total Score obtained by the examinee to those obtained in community, clinical, and forensic reference samples.