Child Custody Evaluations and Co-Parent Counseling

Unfortunately, we live during a time when divorce is often inevitable. It is also unfortunate that many parents are unable to negotiate the details of their children’s custody. When the conflict reaches a point that external sources must intervene to provide guidance in determining custody of the children, a comprehensive psychological evaluation can be very useful in identifying psychological and personality variables of each parent that either predicts success or flag potential challenges. The set of these activities initiated by an external source tend to provide co-parent counseling as per their critical child custody evaluations.

What does it a test and what is the process?

Child custody evaluations involve the following to make co-parent counselling:

  • A clinical interview with each parent
  • Administration of standardized personality¬†measuresto each parent
  • Administration of tests that assess cognitive, emotional, and social information processing by exploring thought processes, styles of thinking, emotional reactivity, interpersonal style, attitude toward self and others, self-awareness, the ability to self-regulate one’s emotions, and coping skills
  • Administration of questionnaires about the children to collect¬†measures¬†of parenting skills from each parent and determine the extent of the knowledge each parent has about their child so that co-parent counselling could prevail
  • Meetings with the child/children individually and together, as well as at least twice when the child/children are accompanied by each parent to provide a sense for how the child/children relate to each parent

In order to complete and accurate and comprehensive psychological evaluation for the purposes of custody, all of the steps are required. I will not skip any of the steps based on either the parents’ or the attorney’s request.

Notably, that the child custody evaluator will not decide the final customer arrangement, as the court considering Virginia Code Section 20-124.3 will decide the final custody.

Additional measures may be added as necessary, including assessment of suicidal risk, assessment of substance abuse, the assessment of trauma, or the assessment of physical and sexual abuse. The need for additional measures is determined at the time that the assessment is conducted. I conduct an initial intake of co-parent counselling with each parent prior to beginning the official custody evaluation to make sure that everyone is in agreement about how the evaluation will be conducted.

How child custody evaluation is made in terms of co-parent counselling?

Our goal in conducting custody evaluations is to shed light on problems that can most usually be resolved so that both parents can be involved in their children’s lives. Most usually, it is not a black-and-white issue of who gets custody; it’s an issue of how custody can be executed in a way that is least harmful and most productive and healthy for the children. In addition, I would be convincing both parents for their contribution toward the safe, secure, and flourishing future of their child or children. They would have to respond politely with better preparation for the interview, so that, valid and fruitful decisions related to child or children future could be made.