Covering the mental health expert's many roles as therapist, mediator, evaluator, consultant to attorneys, expert witness, and more, Philip M. Stahl's Conducting Child Custody Evaluations: From Basic to Complex Issues addresses key topics such as the best interests of the child, custody and time share, divorce and its impact on children, and children's developmental needs. From tackling the terror of testifying to critiquing your own child custody evaluations and avoiding bias inherent in this work, this practical and easy-to-read book offers comprehensive coverage vital to practitioners in this field.
As mentioned in a previous chapter, over the past several years I have spent considerable time critiquing evaluations and have developed a protocol for these critiques. There has been only a limited amount of literature in this area (Gould, Kirkpatrick, Austin, & Martindale, 2004; P. Stahl, 1996) over the past 15 years. Additionally, the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) developed a protocol for critiquing evaluations in domestic violence cases (Dalton, Drozd, & Wong, 2005). The purpose of this chapter is to provide you with an outline of these protocols for critiquing your own evaluation before sending it to the courts and the attorneys. I believe that if evaluators pay attention to how psychologists, attorneys, and judges critique other ...