Deciding on a parenting time arrangement is not always easy, especially in a contested divorce. Sometimes a court cannot determine a parenting time or parental responsibility arrangement that is in the best interests of the child without the help of professionals such as a custody evaluator – a professional that can work with the parents, child, and other involved parties to objectively assess the situation in order to make a recommendation to the court regarding custody.
Custody evaluators are typically psychologists, psychiatrist, or attorneys who differ from child representatives because they do not legally represent the child. They typically employ a number of strategies to make a recommendation to the court regarding parenting time arrangements which may include interviewing kids, their parents, and other parties involved in the child’s life, such as teachers, as well as conducting home visits and reviewing pertinent records.
Quick glance at custody evaluations:
- Generally speaking, custody evaluators are unbiased individuals who have experience assessing complex home and family situations
- If an evaluator is appointed in a case, the judge may require one or both parents to pay for the evaluators services
- A custody evaluator has no legal authority to make decisions, but a court will take their recommendations seriously in order to make a custody determination
When you are considering divorce and wonder whether custody evaluations are a benefit, it is important to work with an experienced child custody lawyer to discuss the pros and cons. The attorneys of Schlesinger & Strauss LLC have decades of successful experience navigating complex cases involving high conflict child custody matters, moving a case forward through skillful negotiation with favorable results.