Over the past five to 10 years, there has been a significant increase in the use of child custody evaluations by the courts. At the same time, the issues have become more complex and difficult. In this book, the author provides a theoretical and practical understanding of many of the issues. A key component is the integration of disparate research findings into a comprehensive resource that will enable the evaluator and the court to understand these complex issues. A second component is to provide a thorough understanding of the fact that divorce brings with it a set of complex needs, and evaluators and the courts must develop a paradigm for weighing these needs in a comprehensive manner.

The Components of the Evaluator's Recommendations

The components of the evaluator's recommendations

After collecting the data, the most difficult task may be organizing it to address the key concerns and make appropriate recommendations. It is critical for evaluators to focus on all of the major concerns raised by each parent, especially when there are allegations of issues such as domestic violence, parental alienation, or sexual abuse. The evaluator will include all the relevant data in the report and then integrate that data in such a way that the recommendations make sense and are relevant to the legal issues in the case.

A particular frustration for judges and attorneys is when an evaluation report reads as discrete pieces of data that lack synthesis or when the data do ...

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