Child Custody Evaluations & Psychological Evaluations in Child Protection Cases

I perform child custody evaluations by court-appointment.  Psychological and parenting evaluations are also often used to assist courts in custody disputes, child protection cases, and other family law matters.  Each case, like each person's story, is different.  High quality evaluations are developed around the needs of the case and questions about legal criteria and thresholds for which psychological information is helpful.  The methodology for conducting evaluations for court involves extensive document review, clinical and forensic interviewing, psychological testing, direct observations and home visits, and contacts with collateral sources.  While most custody cases settle, I can provide court testimony in the form of opinions about the psycholegal questions, if this is necessary. 

Child custody evaluations are among the most complex of all psychological evaluations.  Guidelines often provide beneficial assistance in determining whether the evaluation is helpful and reliable enough for court.  Such guidelines include:

General Guidelines for Psychologists - including Psychologists in Forensic Matters:
APA Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct (2002). 
APA Speciality Guidelines for Forensic Psychologists, 1991.  Also see Fourth Draft of Proposed Revisions to SGFP (9/2/2008).
Guidelines for Child Custody Evaluations (Psychologists):
APA Guidelines for Child Custody Evaluations in Family Law Proceedings (2007).
AFCC Model Standards of Practice for Child Custody Evaluation (2007). 
Guidelines for Evaluations in Child Protection Proceedings (Psychologists).
APA Psychological Evaluations for Child Protection Decisions (2001).
Guidelines for Brief Focused Assessments in Family Court:
AFCC Guidelines for Brief Focused Assessment (2009).

2201 SW 29th Street
Topeka, KS 66611
Phone: (785) 267-0025
Fax:     (785) 266-6546
Bud Dale, Ph.D., J.D., Licensed Psychologist